When you find out you are hapū - pregnant - there can be many emotions and questions. Two of these questions are what do I do now? and what happens then? Below is a basic guide of a timeline for routine pregnancy care. Your midwife will discuss with you why your care may alter and change throughout your pregnancy, this is done with your consent and the wellbeing of yourself and pēpi at the centre of care.
Your midwife can prescribe relevant pregnancy medications, request blood tests, request ultrasounds and refer to other specialists. For all whānau who meet the New Zealand guidelines for free maternity care the only cost will be unfunded blood tests (NIPT), prescription subsidies at the chemist ($5-$10) and ultrasound scans ($40-$60).
What is the role of your midwife?
Your midwife is your go to contact for your pregnancy care. You would continue to see your GP for regular health concerns. Sometimes pregnancy will influence other areas of your health and vice versa, if you are not sure ask your midwife if your concern falls under the Midwifery Scope of Practice.
Firstly, you will book with a midwife.
Your booking visit is a base for your pregnancy and can be best compared to your health to date summary. This visit allows you to work with your midwife to determine your own pregnancy plan moving forward. You will discuss having some bloodwork done as a baseline for pregnancy, blood pressure, supplements for your pregnancy, early pregnancy screening tests and ultrasound scans. From the booking visit you will make your next appointment.
How often will you see your midwife?
As a guideline you will see your midwife approximately every four weeks from your first trimester, every two weeks from 28 weeks and every week from 36 weeks in a well healthy pregnancy.
How often will you have blood tests?
As a guide you will be offered booking blood tests, first trimester screening blood tests, second trimester blood tests - approx. 26-28 weeks and third trimester blood tests at 36 weeks. You may be offered more blood tests than this if that is best for your pregnancy.
How often will I have ultrasound scans?
You will be offered ultrasound scans as part of early pregnancy screening, between 12-14 weeks of pregnancy and at 20 weeks of pregnancy. Throughout pregnancy there may be a reason for you to have more ultrasound scans and this would be discussed with you by your midwife. If you know when your last menstrual period was there is no need to have a dating ultrasound scan in early pregnancy. Your midwife will discuss this with you at your booking visit.
What if my pregnancy has health complications?
Your midwife will discuss with you any other care providers who may be referred to in your pregnancy. These care providers could be your GP, an Obstetrician, Dietician, Diabetic team or any other relevant specialist.
What happens after the baby is born?
Your LMC midwife will visit you at least seven times after the birth of your baby.