Your Stay at WakeMed WP&B Cary
What to Expect Day 1 through Discharge
When you first arrive to our Women’s Pavilion & Birthplace (WP&B) in Cary, you will go directly to Patient Registration, located to the right of the waiting area. There, you and/or your partner will fill out necessary paperwork before being escorted back to our Labor & Delivery area. Wheelchairs are available for moms who need them.
Once you arrive in your Labor & Delivery room, you will meet your labor and delivery nurse, who will start you on an IV. Our traditional maternity care option allows you to labor, deliver and recover in a private labor suite. During labor and delivery, you will be cared for by an experienced labor and delivery nurse, who will assist you in having the most positive birth experience possible.
Your labor and delivery nurse will ask you several questions regarding your personal health and birth plan - for instance, do you wish to have a natural birth or an epidural? Your nurse will continue to work closely with you throughout the entire labor and delivery process to ensure we meet your preferences as best we can. See the WakeMed Birth Day Wish List for additional guidance
At this point, based on your wishes, you may or may not receive certain medications, such as an epidural. Meanwhile, up to four people are allowed to be in the room with you as you labor and deliver. If you are in active labor when you arrive to the hospital, you may not see your obstetrician until it is time for the delivery of your baby. If you are here for a scheduled induction, you will see and speak with your obstetrician prior to delivery.
During labor, you will have access to an in-room Jacuzzi tub. Some women enjoy sitting in the tub as they labor. Additionally, all of our rooms are equipped with a TV and a mini-fridge.
Once your baby is born, he or she will be placed in a warmer located directly in your room. If there are no concerns about your newborn's health or well-being, he or she will be stabilized right there beside you, and we will encourage you to start skin-to-skin immediately. Skin-to-skin is when a naked baby is held against his or her mother's naked skin.
You and your baby will stay in your labor and delivery room for around two hours. During this time, your obstetrician will make any necessary repairs to your body, and your baby will be weighed and measured. This is an important time for you and your baby to bond, and you may even want to try breastfeeding.
After delivery, you will be moved into a post-partum room, where you will stay for an average of two days. However, if you've had a Caesarean section, you will stay for an average of three days. Click for more information about Cesarean births. A nurse with expertise in caring for mothers and newborns will help you with the physical and emotional changes that occur with the birth of a baby. All necessary supplies for you and your baby are kept in your room or brought to you as needed.
As part of our family-centered approach, the Women's Pavilion & Birthplace encourages rooming-in, where your baby is kept in the room with you rather than the nursery. This is special time for you to get to know your newborn and learn how to care for him/her and for yourself, and is especially helpful for those who are breastfeeding.
In the first 24 hours of your stay, both you and your baby will be examined every four hours. Mom will be examined to ensure she is healing properly after birth and there are no post-birth complications, and baby will be checked for temperature, heart rate and respiratory health. In the second 24 hours of your stay, you and baby will be checked every 12 hours. Additionally, mom's obstetrician will visit her once a day, and baby's pediatrician will visit him or her once a day as well.
If you are breastfeeding, a certified lactation specialist will check in with you at least once per day to assist you with breastfeeding or answer any questions you may have. Important to note - many of our nurses also have lactation certifications and can be wonderful resources for our breastfeeding mothers.
During your two-day stay, you will have an opportunity to have your baby photographed by a professional photographer - please feel free to bring any special outfits or props. And you will also receive the information and paperwork necessary to send away for a birth certificate for your little one.
Important Treatments and Testing for Baby
You can expect that your baby will receive several treatments and tests while you are in the hospital. Many can be performed in your room if you wish. They include:
- Vitamin K & Erythromycin Ointment – Within the first two hours of birth, your baby will receive a shot (in the thigh) of Vitamin K to help with blood clotting and erythromycin ointment on his or her eyes to protect him or her from any bacteria picked up in the birth canal.
- Metabolic Screening – This test is mandated by the federal government and will be given to your baby at least 24 hours after birth. It screens for several illnesses.
- Hearing Screening – The National Institutes of Health and the American Academy of Pediatrics recommend that a hearing screening be done on every baby shortly after birth. WakeMed will perform a hearing screening on every baby born at this hospital before they leave. Your baby’s hearing will be screened using a simple, non-invasive method called Automated Auditory Brainstem Response (AABR). Trained hospital staff will conduct the screening.
- Bilirubin Check – At 12 hours and 24 hours post birth, your baby’s bilirubin level (a pigment created by the normal breakdown of red blood cells) will be checked to ensure the liver is functioning properly. This is a non-invasive procedure that is done via a light on the forehead. Preferably, your baby will be sleeping during this test.
- Hepatitis B Shot – We recommend that all babies receive their first Hepatitis B shot in the hospital but require parent consent first.
- Circumcision – If you desire, your baby boy will be circumcised the day after birth. This procedure will not be performed in your room, but your baby will typically return to you within two hours. Generally, this procedure is performed by your obstetrician; however, some pediatricians perform the procedure as well.
- Bath – Your baby will receive his or her first bath in your room, from your nurse, at least 6 hours after birth. Your nurse will also take this opportunity to teach you about bathing your baby.
Meals & Room Supplies
Each day during your stay, you will receive a menu that allows you to make selections for your meals. Meals will be delivered to you in your room by our Food & Nutrition Services staff. Your partner or anyone staying with you in your room can purchase meals and/or snacks in our hospital cafeteria, Points West Café; The Bistro on the first floor; or the Gift Shop, also located on the first floor.
Additionally, a member of our Environmental Services team will empty your trash daily, while members of your nursing team will keep your room stocked with fresh bath towels if you need them, as well as diapers, wipes, burp cloths and blankets for the care of your baby.
Other Things You Should Know
You are encouraged to bring to the hospital your infant car seat carrier so that staff can check it for safety. Additionally, please note that we will not provide you with pacifiers or formula for your baby during your stay.
Videotaping is permitted after the baby is delivered. Photos and video are not permitted during delivery or during any procedures involving mom or baby at any time during the hospital stay. Taking photos or videotaping staff or providers is not permitted without their prior approval. Photos and video must not include other patients, their babies or visitors.
A nurse will come to your room to give you discharge instructions. During this process, he or she will verify your hospital band next to your baby's band one last time. You will be allowed to keep one of your baby's bands.
Car Seat Safety
Your baby's car seat is the safest way for him/her to travel. North Carolina law requires that your baby travel in an approved car seat.
At WakeMed, we are dedicated to the safety of your baby. We recommend that you read the car seat safety booklet, install the seat in your vehicle and become familiar with the car seat prior to your baby's birth. Many local fire, EMS and law enforcement personnel are certified in car seat installation and safety. The National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration is a great place to learn more about keeping your precious new baby safe on the road.