Care After Birth

When you have a normal birth and your baby is well, we recommend you go home within 24 hours.

Why is early transfer home recommended?

There are many reasons why Centenary Hospital for Women and Children recommend early transfer home.

These include:

Partners & family can be more involved in bonding with & caring for the baby.

Earlier establishment of routine.

Both mother and baby sleep better with less interruption.

How will the hospital know if I am ready to go home?

If you are not ready to leave, a longer Birth Stay period would be recommended. You are ready to go home when you are medically fit, confident with feeding your baby and when you have adequate community supports in place.

Will I be supported at home?

Midcall is a midwifery program that is offered to women in the first few days following birth.

Midcall midwives provide individualised postnatal care, feeding and parenting support in the comfort of your own home. The Midcall service is available 7 days a week from 8.30am - 5pm for women who live in the ACT and the Queanbeyan City area.

We ask you to start planning by setting supports in place long before your baby is born.

What can I do to make the transition from Hospital to Home easier?

Your partner may be able to arrange paternity leave.

Ensure you have your baby car seat fitted in your vehicle.

Start developing your postnatal support group before your baby is born.

Let your family know your stay in hospital after the birth of your baby is likely to be 24 hours and accept all offers of help.

Start cooking early. Have a supply of frozen meals available.

Breastfeeding and Lactation Support

The Centenary Hospital is a fully accredited Baby Friendly Hospital (BFHI) and supports all women's choice of feeding. Breastfeeding is promoted with support to initiate and establish breastfeeding. Canberra Hospital has a lactation consultant available Monday - Friday 0830-1700. Referrals and Consultations can be arranged through your midwife.

Baby Friendly Health Initiative - The 10 Steps

Baby Friendly Health Initiative - the Ten Steps Poster (July 2013).pdf

1. Have a breastfeeding policy that is routinely communicated to all staff

2. Train all health care staff in the skills necessary to implement this policy

3. Inform all pregnant women about the benefits and management of breastfeeding

4. Place babies in skin-to-skin contact with their mothers immediately following birth for at least an hour and encourage mothers to recognise when their babies are ready to breastfeed, offering help if needed

5. Show mothers how to breastfeed, and how to maintain lactation even if they should be separated from their infants

6. Give newborn infants no food or drink other than breast milk unless medically indicated

7. Practice rooming in - allow mothers and infants to remain together - 24 hours a day

8. Encourage breastfeeding on demand

9. Give no artificial teats or pacifiers (also called dummies or soothers) to breastfeeding infants

10. Foster the establishment of breastfeeding support groups and refer mothers to them on discharge from the hospital or clinic.