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Last Minute Activities Before Delivery

​If you have the time, consider these activities before delivery: 

  • Make a list of people who will receive birth announcements. If you're ordering print announcements, select the announcement style, and address the envelopes in advance. Likewise, gather e-mail addresses or phone numbers for announcing your baby's arrival.

  • Cook a number of meals and freeze them.

  • Look for child care and/or housekeeping help if you can afford it, and interview candidates in advance. You can also take advantage of friends and family members who are available to help. Even if you don't think you'll need extra help, you should have a list of names to call in case the situation changes.

Before your ninth month, make last-minute preparations for delivery. Your c​hecklist should include the following:

  • Name, address, and phone number of the hospital.

  • Name, address, and phone number of the doctor or nurse-midwife who will deliver your baby and of the person who covers the practice when your doctor is not available.

  • The quickest and easiest route to the hospital or birthing center.

  • The location of the hospital entrance you should use when labor begins.

  • The phone number of an ambulance service, in case you need such assistance in an emergency.

  • The phone number of the person who will take you to the hospital (if that individual does not live with you).

  • A bag packed with essentials for labor and for the rest of your hospital stay, including toiletries, clothing, addresses and phone numbers of friends and relatives, reading material, and a receiving blanket and clothes for the baby to wear home.

  • A car seat for the vehicle so you can take your baby home safely. Make sure the seat is approved for use by a baby at typical newborn weights, or for babies less than 5 pounds if you are having multiples or anticipate an early birth. The lower and upper weight limits can be found on the label and in the manual. Read and follow the manufacturer's instructions carefully. Install it in the backseat, facing the rear. (Never place a rear-facing car seat in front of an air bag.) It should stay rear-facing as long as possible, until your child has reached the rear-facing weight or height limit set by the car seat's manufacturer. Most convertible seats have limits that will permit children to ride rear-facing for 2 years or more. 

  • Be sure to have your car seat checked by a trained child passenger safety technician well ahead of time. Proper use and installation is key to protecting your little one during a crash. Watch the video How to Install a Rear-Facing Car Seat.  

  • If you have other children, arrange for their care during the time you will be at the hospital.

Additional Information from

Last Updated
Adapted from Caring for Your Baby and Young Child: Birth to Age 5, 6th Edition (Copyright © 2015 American Academy of Pediatrics)
The information contained on this Web site should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your pediatrician. There may be variations in treatment that your pediatrician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances.
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