Checklist for Expectant Parents
Plan for your stay at Virginia Hospital Center and learn what to bring with you when it’s time for your baby to be born.
Plan for a Healthy Baby
Learn how to prepare for a healthy baby before and during pregnancy.
Choose a Healthcare Provider
Select a prenatal care provider who fits your needs and preferences.
Take Pregnancy & Birthing Classes
Take part in a wide range of classes to help you and your family get ready for pregnancy, childbirth and caring for your newborn.
Get Breastfeeding Support
If you choose to breastfeed, benefit from support and education on how to nurse your baby.
Find a Pediatrician
Select a Virginia Hospital Center pediatrician to provide healthcare to your baby while they grow. Pediatricians are doctors who specialize in caring for the unique needs of children.
Check Your Insurance Coverage
Contact your insurance provider to learn if Virginia Hospital Center is in your network, what costs your plan covers and what you may have to pay. If you plan to self-pay or do not have insurance, call 703.558.6227 to discuss payment options.
Preregister for Delivery
Save time and help us prepare for your arrival at the birth center by registering online or completing and mailing in a paper preadmission questionnaire [PDF] any time before your due date.
Pack Your Bag
When it’s getting close to your due date, pack your bag for your Hospital stay. Bring:
- Camera or phone that can take pictures
- Clothes for your baby to go home in, such as pajamas that cover the legs and feet
- Glasses (we do not recommend wearing contact lenses during labor and delivery)
- Lamaze focal point (something to focus on during labor, such as a photo, ultrasound image of your baby or inspirational quote)
- Maternity clothes for your stay and trip home, including comfortable shoes and nursing bra
- Music, such as a music streaming app or playlist on your phone
- Robe and slippers
- Toiletries, such as shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste and deodorant
Prepare Your Car
Make sure you’re ready to get to the Hospital and to bring your baby home safely by:
- Installing a car seat correctly before you come to the hospital
- Putting a plastic sack (in case of nausea) and a thick towel (in case your water breaks) in an easy-to-access place in your car
- Practicing how to use your car seat to get familiar with the straps and buckles
Prepare Your Car Seat
Review the manufacturers’ instructions on your car seat and practice by buckling in a stuffed animal. For additional support, the Virginia Department of Health provides free car seat safety check events – see here for their resources. They recommend scheduling a car seat installation 1-2 months prior to your due date.
Bringing Baby Home
Read helpful tips about caring for your baby at home and infant safety.
While at the Hospital, you will view helpful teaching videos on the Newborn Channel and Your NICU Baby channel.