One Born Every Minute
The Pregnancy Hospital Bag Checklist That Every Mom Needs
What’s in this bag? That’s usually the response I get from my husband whenever he picks up my purse. It’s also the same response I get when unloading our bags at the airport. He usually paces nervously when I put my bag on the weighing scale. In his defense, I am a routine overweight bag offender.
If you already have kids you can probably relate. My purse has now become a mommy, baby and husband catchall. On any given day you may find makeup, diapers, snacks, even the NFL Sunday night schedule in my bag. It’s the same story when I’m traveling. I usually have enough outfits for…well let’s just say my bag usually explodes upon opening and contains most of my closet. My husband usually tells people, if you need it she’s probably got it in her bag. I just like to be prepared.
So when it comes to what to pack in your hospital bag in preparation for labor and post-delivery you would think I have a great list. And you would be thinking right. But the ironic part of my own pre-packed pregnancy hospital bag is it’s those items I never thought that I would use that became critically important.
You will need those standard items in your hospital bag such as Robe, Slippers, Warm Socks, Toiletries and a Discharge Outfit for you and baby. But the items that don’t get talked about too much but are vital for you and baby include:
- Insurance Information For You and Your Child
- Medical Providers: Primary Doctor’s Name and Contact Information, Pediatrician Name and Contact Information
- Hospital Forms
- Health Care Proxy
- List of Contact People with Phone Numbers
- Information About Your Child (The name you selected and any do’s or don’t for your child.)
- Any specific wishes that you have for you or your child.
Many births go according to plan. But what happens when they don’t? Many people are unaware of the startling statistics around maternal health in the U.S. and abroad. There has been a steady increase in pregnancy related complications. I was one of the people who was unaware of the statistics until I became one.
I suffered a pregnancy related near miss. This in short means I nearly died during childbirth. I had a severe case of Preeclampsia which went undiagnosed. Preeclampsia is a pregnancy related hypertensive disorder. My condition was so complicated that it comprised most of my vital organs and resulted in me suffering from heart, lung and kidney failure.
I had to be induced into a coma to save my life and that of my child. By the grace of God am I here today. Because I was incapable of making any decisions for myself the hospital staff recommended that my husband look in my hospital bag for clues to determine in part how to proceed. What I packed in the bag played an important role in what unfolded. My health care proxy allowed them to take instructions from my husband. They were able to contact my insurance provider pertaining to my treatment from my insurance information contained in my bag. As an intensive care unit patient, this was critically helpful to ensuring that I received the best care possible. Both my doctor and my child’s doctors were able to be contacted immediately pertaining to our care. My husband was able to contact the rest of my family quickly. And the nurses at the hospital even went the extra mile for my child and me. They took the precious newborn outfit I had packed and had pictures of my daughter taken as I had indicated I wanted in my notes.
With one born every minute, childbirth experiences are often a mixed bag. Keep this in mind when packing for the big day and ensure that you have this critical list of items in your bag.
Lifetime's unscripted series “One Born Every Minute” is back! Don’t miss the Season 2 premiere November 29 at 10 pm/9c. Watch a preview: