During Your Hospital Stay
Arriving at the RMH Family Birthplace
Whether or not this is your first baby, all expectant moms are waiting for just the right time to come to the hospital. For some, the time will be easy to determine—you will go into regular labor; for others, your "water" will break. Still others will not be so sure. If in doubt, call RMH at 689-3380 and talk with a labor and delivery nurse. Your doctor or midwife will also give you guidelines for your arrival at the hospital.
When it's time for your baby's birth, come to the RMH Emergency Department, even if you come from your doctor's office. The Emergency Department personnel will transport you by wheelchair to the Family Birthplace, located on the third floor of the East Tower.
After you have been examined in the check-in area and determined to be in labor, you will be made comfortable in your private room. You may choose up to three persons to stay with you during your labor and birth experience. A Doula, if you choose to use one, would be present in addition to your three coaches. By keeping the same three coaches with you, you will be able to focus and relax more effectively. One of your coaches can be a messenger to those waiting in the waiting room or your coaches may choose to share information by calling the waiting room at extension 33222. The birthing rooms are comfortable and have everything you, your coaches and your newborn baby need for a pleasant birthing experience. Some special features you will enjoy include:
Extra large rooms, furnished with the comforts of home, as well as modern equipment;
- Comfortable beds that shift to various positions for your birthing preference;
- Large private baths (with Jacuzzi for laboring moms);
- Remote control television;
- Rocking chair for your comfort during labor;
- Lounge area with a couch for your partner's comfort;
- Heated bed for baby's warming just after birth.
You may take pictures or videos of your partner and baby. Please be sure to ask nurses, doctors and midwives if you can take pictures of them FIRST. Your coach may take pictures (but no videography) in the operating room during a Cesarean birth.
To protect the privacy and confidentiality of other families, videotape or take pictures only of your own baby in the nursery.
Following Your Baby's Birth
Every attempt will be made to keep your baby with you as much as possible. We encourage you to keep your baby in your room.
The Family Birthplace has its own modern operating room with equipment for performing Cesarean births. If you know ahead of time that you will be having a Cesarean birth, consider attending the Cesarean Birth class.
Pain can change your mood, cause sleep loss and keep you from being active during labor. You have a right to expect us to manage your pain well. It is up to you to tell your nurse about any pain you are experiencing so that we may give you the best care possible. We offer a wide variety of comfort measures—birthing ball, massage chair, birthing stool, jacuzzi, doula support, intravenous pain medication, TENS unit (transelectronic nerve stimulation), epidural anesthesia (24 hour coverage) and more. You are welcome to bring your own music and aromatherapy (no candles please) for relaxation purposes.
After the Birth
This is a very special time for a family. Because we believe in keeping families together, your support person may stay with you 24 hours-a-day. Your children are welcome to visit you after you have your baby, but they will need to go home after visiting hours.
We offer 24 hour rooming in (baby can stay in your room).
If your baby is sick or has extra needs, specially-trained nurses will care for your baby in our special-care nursery. If he/she requires more specialized care than we can provide, we will contact the University of Virginia Hospital NETS team (newborn emergency transport), with whom we work closely, to coordinate the care and/or transfer of your baby.
Our nurses are trained to meet your educational requirements throughout labor, delivery, after delivery and home care. A lactation consultant will visit breastfeeding moms every day.
RMH provides a newborn teaching television channel that offers information in both English and Spanish about you and your baby's care. You will receive a program guide to help you chose your topics of interest. We encourage you to watch this channel during your stay.
Numerous security procedures and devices are in place throughout the RMH Family Birthplace to make sure that your baby is safe. In addition, your baby's picture will be taken and kept on temporary file. You will receive infant security instructions upon admission to labor and delivery.
For more information or questions about the RMH Family Birthplace, please call 540-689-3333 or e-mail us.