Generally, we will book you for antenatal care as soon as you find out you are pregnant. You will need a GP referral covering you for your care and also for your obstetric ultrasounds.
We see you at around 10 weeks for an Initial consult, or we can see you earlier for a dating and viability ultrasound if you are unsure of your dates or need some reassurance.
You will need to be in a Private Health Fund with the appropriate level of cover for obstetrics and delivery in a private hospital.
You can check you are eligible by phoning your health fund.
We accept all health funds except for Frank, La Trobe and Budget Health Direct.
Your appointment schedule for Antenatal Care
Your Initial Consult
We see you around 10 weeks for this appointment, which lasts roughly 45 minutes. The Obstetrician will perform an ultrasound, get your background history, chat to you in regards to your preferences and plan and what testing is available to you. She will give you a referral for any bloods or further testing that need to be done.
NUCHAL Translucency and Pre-Enclampsia Testing
NT testing is a non-invasive ultrasound which measures the size of the nuchal at the back of the baby’s neck. Your results will give you some detailed figures explaining your risk of Down Syndrome and a few other chromosomal abnormalities.
Pre-eclampsia testing is done along with your ultrasound. Pre-eclampsia affects the arteries carrying blood to the placenta and can result in a growth restricted baby is undetected.
15-16 Week Antenatal Visit
You will see the Obstetrician, who will chat to you as to your well-being, take your Blood Pressure. You will also hear your baby’s heart- beat. You will be able to ask any questions that you have. You will also be given information regarding booking in to the Newcastle Private Hospital.
20 Week Morphology Ultrasound and Return Antenatal Visit
This is a detailed anatomy scan, This will be teamed with a regular antenatal visit where you will catch up with the Obstetrician to check with how you are and to discuss what is expected over the coming weeks. You are halfway now and excitement is building, especially with some images to show, and may be even the sex of bub known. Or will you be keeping the sex of bub a surprise? Big decisions !!
24 Week Antenatal Visit
Again, you will see the Obstetrician at this appointment. You will very much be starting to feel pregnant now and experiencing more frequent movements. It is getting very exciting! You will be given a pathology form to have some bloods done and also a Glucose Tolerance Test (GTT) which will test you for gestational diabetes.
28 Week Antenatal Visit
We will go through the results of your pathology and GTT with you, listen to bub’s heart beating and chat about the changes and upcoming weeks. If it is found that your GTT has been indicative of gestational diabetes, we will refer you to an Endocrinologist. We refer to a few Endocrinologists that are local and work in close contact with both ourselves and the Newcastle Private Hospital for your best care.
30 Week Antenatal Visit
You are really feeling pregnant now! This baby only has 10 more weeks to grow and the impending birth seems real now. Discussions as to birthing preferences may be on your mind. You will see the Obstetrician who will address any concerns or questions.
32 Week Antenatal Visit
8 weeks to go! You will be looking forward to every visit now, crossing them off your appointment card, and knowing the end is not too far away. You will see the Obstetrician today, who will listen to bub and address your questions or concerns.
34 Week Antenatal Visit
Excitement is growing, along with your bub and your tummy. Another thing that be growing is your tiredness and eagerness. The Obstetrician will see you today though and you will listen to bub and be able to address any questions. You will be given a swab to check for Group B Strep, which is a bacteria commonly found in your vagina or rectum. This is a simple swab taken from the vagina and rectum and then tested. If GBS positive you will receive intravenous antibiotics at the time of labour.
36 Week Antenatal Visit
A formal ultrasound will be performed today to check growth, position, placental location and position of bub. Hopefully bub will be on his/her best behaviour and you will go home with some amazing photos. You will discuss the results of your GBS swab, and any other questions you may have with the Obstetrician. You will return next week to start your weekly visits.
37 Week Antenatal Visit
It really is the downhill run now to the birth your baby, and thank goodness you will be saying! You are tired and probably uncomfortable and that little baby has not much more room to grow. You probably have also probably started your maternity leave and are in full prepare mode. You may have questions relating to lactation and the Obstetrician will talk you through this.
38 Week Antenatal Visit
You are right at the end of that appointment card full of appointments that a few months ago seemed a lifetime away. Fingers may be crossed for an early arrival. Of course, as always, the Obstetrician will check all is exactly how it should be and answer all of your questions or concerns. You will hear your little baby’s heart beating also. Next week is only 7 sleeps away right…
39 Week Antenatal Visit
Plans are in place and the countdown is on. It really is just a matter of waiting now, it could be any time. Discussion will be made as to the next step if the due date is surpassed and if an induction is needed, what will happen during this process.
40 Week Antenatal Visit
The Obstetrician may do a vaginal examination to check if you are showing any signs of dilation. Sometimes a stretch and sweep procedure (a relatively gentle way of trying to initiate a natural labour) may be offered and conducted at this time, as if successful can reduce the need for an induction. An induction will likely be booked at this time, in case natural proceedings do not commence in a few days.
This is an appointment for Mums to come back around 6 weeks for a check up and a chat. So much has happened over the last 6 weeks, it is nice to catch up. It is also a time to ensure your body has bounced back well and if there are any concerns they can be addressed at this appointment. A pap smear is offered and any contraceptive needs addressed. At this appointment we also ask you to fill in a questionnaire that addresses how you are feeling emotionally. The transition and adjustment to parenthood can be both emotionally and physically tiring and you may not be coping as well as hoped. This is very common but it is important to know there is help for you. We can refer you to a psychologist who specialises in postnatal emotional care.