Labor & Delivery: What to Expect at the Hospital


Is your big day coming up soon? 

If so, it means that you are likely researching every bit of information you can learn about having a baby. There are many important steps along the way, but the most important one is what happens the day you deliver your new bundle of joy!

Here we will go over what you need to do before going to the hospital, what will happen when you first arrive and how delivery typically progresses once you are checked in.

Before You Go to the Hospital

Before the big day arrives, we highly suggest having a few things prepared and sorted out in advance. Nobody wants to be scrambling around at two in the morning in a panic!

Here is a quick checklist to get you started!

Prepare a Birthing Plan

Once labor begins, you will not want to be bombarded with questions; this is why you need to create a birthing plan in advance. A birthing plan is simply a list of preferences for your birthing experience. Speaking with an OB/Gyn or midwife can help you sort out the specifics in advance.

Tour the Hospital

Taking a tour of your hospital before the birth is highly advised and recommended around week 32 of your pregnancy. By touring the hospital, you can learn where to park, where to check-in, what the delivery and recovery rooms look like and more. You will also have the chance to speak with the staff and ask questions about when you should arrive and any other advice they have for you.

Pack a Hospital Bag

Unless you have a scheduled childbirth, like a C-section or an induction, labor rarely begins on schedule. It could be three in the afternoon or one in the morning when your baby decides it’s time to come into this world. 

So, it’s a good idea in the weeks leading up to your due date for both you and your partner to each pack a hospital bag! For ideas of what to include in your bag, check out our Hospital Bag Checklist

When You First Arrive at the Hospital

Here’s the biggest question most new mothers have: when the big day arrives, what can I expect?

As soon as you arrive at the hospital, you will begin the check-in process. Hospitals are designed to be streamlined, so all you need is your ID, insurance card, and possibly your license plate number. 

Hopefully, you completed a hospital tour so that you know where to go without hesitation. It helps to also have your birthing plan in-hand as you arrive. Once you are checked in, you will be escorted to a triage, labor or delivery room, depending on the progress of your labor.

About Labor and Delivery

While hospitals deliver multiple babies every day, no two births are exactly the same, which means that your care will be determined according to your needs. No matter what your situation is, the hospital staff will calmly communicate the best available options.

Generally, after arrival and check-in, you will be escorted to a triage or labor room where staff will check the mother and baby’s vitals. Once they determine you are ready to deliver, you will be sent to the delivery room in preparation for the birth.

It is at this point that having a birthing plan available will help to streamline your process. The staff will get you set up according to your specifications, including pain management, positioning and the people joining you for the birth.

Throughout your delivery, hospital staff will be readily providing support and comfort, and soon you will be blessed with a beautiful baby.

COVID-19 and Delivering at a Hospital

During these unprecedented times, hospitals are taking extra measures to ensure all patients’ and staff’s safety. Each hospital has different rules and regulations about what is and is not permitted during COVID-19. 

We highly suggest that you speak with your hospital in advance to learn how these new rules may affect your delivery plans.  

Our Expert, All-Female Practitioners

Every expectant mother has her own ideas about how she envisions her birth experience. Our all-female team of practitioners strive to make your birthing experience as safe and rewarding as possible. We care that your baby’s birth aligns with your own priorities. 


We offer you a variety of experts, including MDs, WHNPs (women’s health nurse practitioners), and FNPs (family nurse practitioners) in a single office so we can care for the many aspects of obstetrics and gynecology for our clients. 

Are you looking for an OB/Gyn that you trust with your pregnancy journey?  Book an appointment with us today!