How can I prepare for the birth experience? I’d like to know what to expect while I’m in the delivery room.
Tampa General Hospital offers childbirth education classes to prepare you for the birth and parenting experiences. English language classes are available.
Can I register in advance for my delivery?
Yes, we encourage expectant mothers to pre-register about two months before their due date. Pre-registration takes about 20 minutes and can be done between 7:30 a.m. and 10:30 p.m., seven days a week, in the OB Admitting Office located on the 4th floor, Bayshore Pavilion, Room K4007. You will need to bring a photo identification card to complete the pre-registration process.
We now offer pre-registration online through MyChart. Click here to pre-register online.
What should I bring to the hospital?
Please bring your prenatal records with you to the hospital. You should also bring a small bag with personal items including a robe, comfortable nightgown and socks or slippers. Please bring essential toiletry items such as a toothbrush, toothpaste, brush, etc. Other items that may make you more comfortable, such as a personal pillow, are also a good idea. We will provide baby t-shirts and diapers during your stay. Don’t forget to bring a going home outfit for yourself and an outfit and blanket for your new baby. Because nothing is as precious as your new baby, TGH wants to make his/her very first car ride a safe experience. An infant car seat is our gift to you to help ensure your new baby’s safety. You’ll also receive a TGH welcome bag containing personal care items.
Where should I go when I come to the hospital to deliver?
When you come to TGH to deliver your baby, follow the signs to EMERGENCY and drive up the ramp to the Emergency & Trauma Center, where you will receive complimentary short-term valet parking. Enter the Emergency & Trauma Center, and staff at the information desk will direct you to the Women’s Center. Due to limited parking at the Emergency & Trauma Center, you must move your car within 24 hours. Parking is available in the parking garage. A $3 fee is due upon exiting. The first hour of parking is free.
What will my support person need to bring to the hospital?
Since labor sometimes lasts a while, your support person may want to bring a snack as well as a pillow, blanket and change of clothes. The Cafeteria/Food Court is open to midnight and offers McDonalds and Starbucks.
Who can be with me while I am in labor?
We welcome up to three support people to be by your side during this very special time. If you have other guests that you would like to see during this time, they may check in with the security guard and rotate in and out of your room at appropriate times. However, no more than three guests are permitted at any time. Following the birth of your baby, one adult may stay overnight with you in a private room at the discretion of the nursing staff. TGH provides couplet care, meaning that mom and baby are not separated unless medically necessary.
What can I expect if I am having a Cesarean birth?
For a Cesarean birth, one support person may accompany you to the operating room. However, in certain situations it may be necessary to ask your support person to leave the operating room and wait in the waiting room. If your support person is in the operating room with you, they will accompany you and baby to the recovery room.
What kind of pain management is available?
You and your healthcare provider will decide what pain management is best for you. Tampa General Hospital has anesthesia services available 24-hours a day, should you need them. Tampa General provides several options for pain management during labor and is the only hospital in Tampa providing the use of nitrous oxide to manage labor pain which can be used instead of an epidural or prior to an epidural. For more information about your options for pain management during labor, click here.
I may want to breastfeed my baby. Do you provide assistance to help me get started?
We encourage you to breastfeed. Our lactation consultants and staff are available to assist you and your baby with breastfeeding. Below are 10 ways TGH's Women's Center supports breastfeeding:
- Our staff is guided by a current breastfeeding policy.
- Our staff is provided with up-to-date information and education to help you breastfeed.
- We provide opportunities for pregnant women receiving care at a Tampa General prenatal care site to learn about breastfeeding.
- We encourage mothers to hold their baby skin-to-skin and help recognize when their baby is ready to feed.
- We show mothers how to breastfeed and how to express breast milk even if they are separated from their baby.
- We give babies only breast milk, unless there is a medical reason for the baby to receive formula or formula is requested by the mother.
- We encourage rooming-in (allowing mothers and infants to remain together 24 hours a day).
- We encourage breastfeeding in response to the baby’s feeding cues. We let babies determine their own feeding schedule.
- We discourage the use of pacifiers or artificial nipples, as they may interfere with establishing breastfeeding.
- We help mothers find local breastfeeding support.
May I take pictures of my baby during labor and delivery?
Photographs and videos may be taken in the Labor & Delivery room. We ask that you respect any request by a staff member to turn off your video camera if asked to do so.
I’m concerned about the safety of my newborn. Will my baby be in the same room with me?
Your baby will room-in with you.
You can rest assured knowing that the Women’s Center has 24-hour security monitoring access to the unit, as well as badge-only access. The Women’s Center staff has special identification badges and will always identify you and your baby by verifying your patient identification bracelets. You should only give your baby to someone with this special identification badge.
Can my baby’s siblings visit?
During your stay in the Women’s Center we ask that visitors who do not feel well, have a fever, respiratory symptoms or have recently been exposed to chicken pox, measles, mumps or the flu not visit. When you are in the mother-baby unit, healthy siblings are welcome to visit until 8:30 p.m. One adult may stay overnight with you on the mother-baby unit. A father of the baby under age 18 is permitted.
How can my family and friends stay in touch while I’m in labor?
We suggest that during labor and delivery you designate one person to make calls to friends and family to keep them updated on your condition. After delivery, your room in the mother-baby unit will have a direct dial phone number for your convenience. Your friends and family may call the main hospital phone number, (813) 844-7000, and ask for you by name.
I’m having a baby boy and I want him circumcised. How do I schedule this procedure?
Check with your insurance provider to find out if they pay for this procedure. Ask your healthcare provider about the risks and benefits of circumcision. This service is provided at TGH. Let your nurse know on admission if you are interested in having your baby circumcised.
Important Phone Numbers
Main Switchboard………………….…(813) 844-7000
Tour the Women’s Center……...…..1-800-822-3627
Childbirth Education Classes…...…1-800-822-3627
Birth Certificate Office……...………..(813) 844-7691
Lactation Consultant………….….....(813) 844-7613