Welcome to Guelph General Hospital.
This is where you will come to have your baby if you plan to have a hospital birth. I’ll be giving you a quick tour so that you feel more comfortable and prepared when you arrive. At Guelph General Hospital you will be cared for by a supportive team of professionals. Our team consists of obstetricians, midwives, nurses, family doctors, paediatricians, a nurse practitioner, respiratory therapists, a lactation consultant, clerical and support staff who all work together to provide you, your baby, and your support person with the best care possible. If you arrive between the hours of 8:30 p.m. and 6 a.m. you will need to come to the Emergency Department and let the security guards know why you are here. From there you can proceed to the sixth floor.
The birthing unit triage is located on the sixth floor across from the elevators. For security purposes all of our units are locked. When you arrive please pick up the phone and tell the nurse why you are here. Your primary care provider may be an obstetrician a midwife or a family physician and they may have special instructions about going to the hospital just for you depending on who has been looking after you prenatally.
You should come to the birthing unit triage if you are 20 weeks pregnant or further along and:
- If you have been contracting every five minutes for one hour, if your contractions are strong enough that you are finding it difficult to talk or walk when you’re having a contraction, or if you’re having to breathe through them.
- If you think that your water may have broken
- If you are bleeding
- If you notice a change or decrease in your baby’s movements (your baby should move six times in two hours)
- If your health care provider has advised you to come into the hospital
If you are less than 20 weeks pregnant you will be seen in the Emergency Department. If you have been involved in a car accident, fallen or have been injured, you should go to the Emergency Department and an obstetrical care provider will see you there.
In triage your nurse or midwife will gather information as to why you might believe that you are in labour or have a concern about the health of you or your baby. Please be sure to let them know if you have any special considerations in pregnancy such as high blood pressure or diabetes. From here you will be taken to a curtained area where you can have one support person accompany you. You may be wondering what to bring to hospital when you are ready to have your baby.
Things to bring include:
- Your provincial health card any additional insurance
- Information on any medications you are taking
- A pen, pencil or anything you need to occupy yourself or to relax you during your stay
- There is a coffee and snack shop available in the hospital for your partner or support person but feel free to bring snacks and for them as well as for yourself or after you give birth
- Pillows from home to keep you comfy while you are in labour.
- Underwear and sanitary pads, comfortable clothing for yourself for after you’ve delivered•Newborn size diapers and wipes or wash clothes
- Baby clothes for when your baby is not skin to skin, as well as receiving blankets•A car seat that is five years old or newer
- Toiletries such as shampoo and soap, toothbrush and toothpaste
- Money for anything else that you may need
You will be assessed in triage. These assessments include your vital signs, and checking your baby’s heart rate and rhythm. You may be placed on the monitor. We will also check your contraction pattern including duration and strength of the contractions. We might also check to see if your water is broken or check your cervix to see how you are progressing in labour. If you are scheduled to have a C-sectionor induction, your health care provider will give you instructions ahead of time. Also, it’s important to know that sometimes plans change depending on what is happening on the unit.
From here you will either be admitted into labour and delivery as an inpatient for further care and assessment, or you may also be sent home with further instructions and a plan. Once you are in labour, you will come to one of our five labour and delivery rooms or the operating room, depending on your situation.
During labour you are able to have two support people with you at all times. You will also have a dedicated one-to-one nurse or midwife who will stay in the room with you and provide you with support, comfort and answer all of your questions. Your nurse or midwife will be monitoring both you and your baby during the labour process. They will let you know the recommended mode and frequency of this monitoring.
Many women are able to manage labour with simple interventions and comfort measures. However, there are pain medications available to you depending on how far along you are in and labour, such as narcotics or an epidural. Please ask your healthcare team about these options. We also promote skin to skin contact for at least the first hour or two after delivery as this helps promote your baby’s heartbeat, regulate the temperature and blood sugar, and it is a great time to bond with your baby and practice feeding.
Our operating room is located near our labour and delivery rooms, as well as a Special Care Nursery. If you are going to have a C-section this is where it will be. The recovery room is located near the operating room and if you have a C-section, we will be bringing you here for a period of specialized monitoring and recovery. From here you’ll go to your postpartum room. Providing that all is well with you and your baby you will be kept together at all times.
Babies that are born a little early or who need extra help or specialized care for the first few hours or days of life, will come to our Special Care Nursery. This can be unexpected. The nursery nurses, pediatricians, and nurse practitioner will provide you with updates on your baby’s progress and answer any questions that you may have during this time. Here at Guelph General Hospital we provide a family-centered environment, and want you to participate in the care of your baby. Upon arrival to the Special Care Nursery, you and your family will be given information regarding routine practices and visiting guidelines.
During your postpartum stay we will provide you with a folder with all of the public health information from the Healthy Baby Healthy Children Program that you’ll need for after delivery. This includes community resources on breastfeeding and your own health after delivery. We also do two tests on the baby before discharge. The first is a hearing test and the second is the newborn screen, a heel prick test. While we perform this test it can be painful so it is important to use comfort measures such as skin to skin, breastfeeding, or the administration of sucrose during the procedure.
Before discharge home we will provide you with information on registering your baby with Service Ontario so that you can complete the birth certificate and social insurance number and we will give you the temporary health card.
Visiting hours at Guelph General Hospital are open but we recommend keeping visits here short or saving some visits for home as you’ll need the time to rest and get to learn and know your baby.
We want you to be comfortable here so please ask your team members any questions that you may have. At Guelph General Hospital we celebrate the birth of every child with a chime heard throughout the hospital. It is our privilege t o be part of this special occasion in your life. Everyone’s birth experience is different and we want yours to be the best and safest possible.