Making a Birth Plan

Your birth plan

Birth plans help everyone supporting you, from your midwife to a birth partner, to a friend, relative, or doula, to get a better idea of what you think might help you during labour and birth, and what you would prefer to be part of your labour and birth.

Midwives use Birth Plans to help them get a better understanding of what someone needs and expects. They will read through a Birth Plan as part of meeting and greeting someone who has arrived in labour at a Birth Centre or Labour ward, or when supporting someone at a Home birth.

You will find more information about Birth Plans and a suggested template here

There is also template for a Birth Plan in your digital My Pregnancy Notes, that can be completed with your midwife.

Birth Plans usually include topics such as:

  • Where you want to give birth?
  • Who will be with you?
  • How you want to approach birth: Active birth? Hypnobirthing? Water birth?
  • Your pain relief preferences
  • Your thoughts about birth interventions
  • Your birth partners role eg cutting the cord
  • Skin-to-skin time after birth
  • Your wishes for baby to have vitamin K
  • How you want to feed your baby
  • Who can visit and when?

Did you know

  • Your midwife will usually discuss your birth preferences with you at your 36 week appointment.
  • It is up to you whether you want to use a template or whether you want to work to something of your own design.
  • It is fine to use language that works for you. Some people prefer to call them Birth Wish Lists or Birth Preferences
  • Most parents-to-be find that putting together a Birth Plan helps them to understand their choices and talk through any worries
  • Birth plans range from something as simple as “I’ll see how it goes on the day” to quite structured documents containing very specific requests.
  • Birth Plans are not contracts. They are not cast in stone
  • You can change your mind about some or all of your birth plan at any time
  • Some people choose not to make a Birth Plan. It is totally your choice whether you have one or not.