Congratulations on choosing the Alternative Birthing Center (ABC) at Women & Infants Hospital for the delivery of your baby.
After you deliver, you have two options for discharge.
- You may deliver in the ABC and then be transferred to a standard postpartum room for recovery for either one or two nights (typical).
- You may be discharged directly from the ABC. The ABC early discharge occurs no sooner than six hours after birth and may extend up to 12 to 18 hours depending on the time of birth.
- If you deliver during the day, you will stay in the ABC for six hours or until the pediatrician comes in to discharge the baby.
- If you deliver in the evening, you will stay in the ABC until the pediatrician comes in the morning to discharge the baby.
Does anyone need to approve my early discharge?
If you would like to be discharged directly from the ABC, you will need approval from both your pediatrician and your midwife. A pediatrician agreement form needs to be signed by your pediatrician and mailed back to the hospital. This form is also available at your midwife’s office.
Will my pediatrician see my baby before I go home?
Most pediatricians who agree to an early discharge will see the baby anytime during the day. Some pediatricians will only do an early discharge if it coincides with their daily morning rounds. If your pediatrician does not have privileges at Women & Infants, a staff pediatrician will perform the discharge physical.
When will a circumcision be done?
Circumcisions will be performed by the obstetricians affiliated with your midwife. They are usually done the day after your birth and after your pediatrician has physically evaluated your baby. However, with an early discharge directly from the ABC, there may not be time to arrange for and perform the circumcision during your brief postpartum stay in the ABC. If that is the case, you can arrange through your midwife's office to have your son circumcised within the next ten days. This would require that you return to the hospital with your baby and plan to stay for two to three hours.
What tests will be done on my baby before we are discharged?
A hearing assessment will be done on the baby before discharge. If a hearing assessment is not available, you may return for the hearing assessment at a later date as an outpatient.
Will I get any additional help once I go home?
Upon discharge you will be given instructions by your providers and your nurse. You will be sent home with a reminder card explaining when to call your midwife, when to call the pediatrician and reminders of what you will need to do (i.e., counting wet diapers, taking your baby’s temperature twice daily to be reported to the nurse at your home visit, etc.).
The ABC nurse will call you the following day after you go home to check in on you. At this time she will also set up a time for a home visit on the second day.
What can I expect at the home visit?
A nurse will come to your house to check on you:
- Check your vital signs.
- Evaluation of perineum/fundus/lochia.
- Evaluation of breasts and breastfeeding/latch.
- Evaluation of nutrition for mom and baby – how you doing with your eating, urinating, bowel movements.
- Evaluation of self- care, safety, educational needs/medications.
She will also check on your baby:
- Check your baby’s vital signs and weight.
- Do a PKU heel stick on your baby.
- Do a bilirubin heel stick on your baby, if indicated.