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Coming to hospital

When to get in touch

Having a baby is a huge milestone, and we want you to feel as comfortable and confident as possible along the way. Here we provide you with helpful information about preparing for your stay and what to expect.

Our San Maternity team is here to answer any questions you may have during pregnancy – phone us on 02 9480 4161. A midwife will give you a call approximately one month before your due date to answer any questions you may have before delivery.

If you have concerns prior to 20 weeks, do not hesitate to contact your obstetrician or your GP immediately, or visit the San’s Emergency Care Unit.

If you’re 20 weeks or more, please contact us immediately (day or night) if any of the following things happen:

  • Ruptured membranes (waters have broken) or continuous leakage of fluid.
  • Any bleeding or discoloured discharge from the vagina.
  • Dizziness, visual disturbances, severe headaches, nausea and vomiting.
  • Noticeable decrease in, or lack of, foetal movement.
  • Regular contractions.
  • Premature labour.
It is important you contact us on 02 9480 4161 before coming to hospital for the birth of your baby so we can prepare for your arrival and give you advice on the best way to access Birthing Unit.

What to bring

You can have up to two support people with you in the maternity unit – and there are also a few other useful things we recommend bringing.

A small bag for the birthing unit, with:

  • Antenatal card (give this to the Birthing Unit midwives)
  • Current medications (in their original containers)
  • Basic toiletries, and
  • An outfit to wear after the birth.

You will also need a larger bag, to take to the postnatal unit following the birth, for the rest of your stay with:

  • Sleepwear, including dressing gown and slippers
  • Casual day wear including maternity bras
  • Personal toiletries including sanitary pads
  • Clothes for your baby to wear home - we provide singlets and onesies, but you’re welcome to bring in simple clothes for your baby to wear whilst in hospital (but please don’t bring anything that has sentimental value)
  • Medicare card (and any other health care / concession cards)
  • Any required prescriptions including repeat forms – these should be given to midwifery staff to be administered during your stay
  • Payment method for any estimated gap between fund benefits and hospital fees, or total estimated costs of hospitalisation if you are self-funded.

Other things you should know:

  • A small lockable cupboard is provided for use in each room
  • Please label your personal belongings clearly so they can be easily located if misplaced
  • Please don’t bring unnecessary clothing, large sums of money, or valuables including jewellery
  • The San does not accept liability for lost or damaged personal items or valuables.

Caring for your baby

Once your baby has arrived, we recommend rooming-in (having your baby in your room rather than in the nursery). Research shows that this helps promote bonding, builds your confidence in parenting skills, helps you get to know your baby’s behaviour and routines better, encourages better lactation and encourages feeding on demand. Our midwives will help show you how to bath, settle and change your baby, and much more.

Getting started feeding

At San Maternity, we recommend breastfeeding according to your baby's needs – and our midwives and lactation consultants are on hand to help you get started. We’re happy to assist you with your feeding method of choice but we will need your consent before giving your baby formula.

Having visitors

While you’re in hospital your friends and family are welcome to come and see you – however we ask them not to visit during the rest period between 1pm and 3pm daily, and our visiting hours end at 8pm. Currently San Maternity and Special Care Nursery patients can have three visitors a day. Siblings and other children are welcome, however only one child can visit at a time.

When you leave

The average length of a maternity stay is 3 - 4 nights for a vaginal delivery and 5 nights for a caesarean. Discharge happens between 8.30am and 10am – we ask that you are ready to vacate your room at this time so we can prepare for our next admissions. Remember, you’ll need clothes for your baby and an approved capsule fitted in your car for the journey home – if you need further information on this, just ask a midwife.