Prepare for Delivery

Healthy Start can help you prepare for labor and delivery. Learn breathing and relaxation exercises, get answers to your questions about breastfeeding, and gain tips on how to care for the health of you and your baby by talking to your Healthy Start Care Coordinator.

A Birth Plan

Preparing for a new baby can leave parents with a lot to think about before, during and after labor. Making a Birth Plan for you and your family, and talking about it with your doctor or midwife can help you decide what works best for you. Even experienced parents should have a plan.

A Birth Plan may include answers to the following questions:

  • Who do you want present during birth?
  • Does your partner want to witness the birth?
  • Are you planning for natural childbirth, pain medicine or an epidural?
  • Do you want photos taken during delivery?
  • Do you want to watch your delivery, if possible?
  • Do you want your baby’s blood cord banked?
  • Are there any traditions you want to take place during or after delivery?
  • Do you want immediate skin to skin contact with your baby?
  • Do you want to breastfeed your baby as soon as possible?
  • Do you want a Lactation Consultant to assist you with breastfeeding?
  • Do you want your baby to have a pacifier or bottle during your stay?
  • Do you want your baby with you at all times during your hospital stay?
  • Who do you want to cut the umbilical cord?
  • If your baby is a boy, do you want him circumcised?

What to Pack

Knowing what you need before you head to the hospital or birth center and having a bag packed by the door or in the car can help you have a more relaxed birth experience. Here are some items you don’t want to be without:

  • Photo ID and insurance cards
  • Cell phone and charger—to call family and friends and take pictures
  • Toothbrush, toothpaste and other personal hygiene items
  • Comfortable clothes and nursing bras
  • Rear facing car seat—make sure the car seat is installed properly
  • Outfit for baby to wear home

While preparing for childbirth can provide comfort for new moms and dads, be flexible. Things might not happen exactly as planned—and that is OK. The safety of you and your baby is most important!


We’ve gathered resources and general information designed to help you understand aspects of health related to you before, during, and after pregnancy and general information all about baby care.

Pregnancy & Mother Care

Because every pregnancy is different, always talk to your health care provider about what is right for you before, during, and after your pregnancy.

Baby Care

Always talk to your doctors and health care professionals in any emergency situation. When in doubt, call your health care provider.

Healthy Babies Start With Healthy Moms