Frequently Asked Questions for Expectant Parents
Safely Deliveringat Northside Hospital
Download the PDF version of "Delivering Safely at Northside Hospital: Frequently Asked Questions for Expectant Parents" by clicking the links below.
- English Maternity FAQ
- Spanish Maternity FAQ
We've curated the best-of-the-best of our maternity content to support and inspire you and your family along your joyous journey. Come explore!
Before You Arrive
Since I can’t come tour the hospital, how do I know what to expect?
For Northside Atlanta, Cherokee and Forsyth, please consult our Pre-admissions Packet eBook (English) (Spanish). Your physician will provide a hard copy of this packet. This resource is a great review of the information covered in a tour and includes a checklist of “things to consider” and what to pack.
You can access Northside Hospital Gwinnett’s pre-admission packet below or receive a hard copy from your obstetrician if you prefer.
- Your Guide to Pre-Admission at Northside Hospital Gwinnett(English)(Spanish)
Do I need to pre-register?
Yes. Please complete the pre-admission paperwork by your sixth month of pregnancy. Your information will be reviewed and you will receive a confirmation letter approximately one month before your due date.
Where can I find a birth plan?
To learn more about birth plans and for a birth plan work sheet, and .Fill out the Labor Preferences/Childbirth Plan worksheet and discuss it with your health care provider prior to coming to the hospital. Bring a copy with you to the hospital and share it with your nurse.
What pre-natal classes does Northside offer?
Northside Atlanta, Forsyth and Cherokee campuses have both in-person and online classes. For information about classes at our Atlanta, Forsyth and Cherokee campuses, click here.
For information about classes at our Gwinnett campus, click here.
Online classes are available for everyone planning a delivery within the Northside Hospital system.
How do I know if I'm in labor? When is it time to go to the hospital?
The question of whether you’re in labor and when to come to the hospital is one for your health care provider. Additionally, you can reference our Your Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy eBook (English)(Spanish).
Upon Arrival to the Hospital
Will I be tested for COVID-19?
All maternity patients are tested for COVID-19. Your support person will be screened for symptoms upon arrival, but will not be tested.
When I am in labor, where do I go to check in?
- Northside Hospital Atlanta:From 6:30 a.m.-7 p.m. use the Labor and Delivery entrance; from 7 p.m.- 6:30 a.m., use the Women’s Center atrium level entrance. Your support person will go in with you, will be screened for COVID-19 symptoms and get a wristband to identify them as your support person. At that time, your support person can move the car to the parking area.
- Northside Hospital Cherokee:Go to the Labor & Delivery entrance. Your support person will go in with you, will be screened for COVID-19 symptoms and get a wristband to identify them as your support person. At that time, your support person can move the car to the parking area.
- Northside Hospital Forsyth:Go to the Labor & Delivery entrance. Your support person will go in with you, will be screened for COVID-19 symptoms and get a wristband to identify them as your support person. At that time, your support person can move the car to the parking area.
- Northside Hospital Gwinnett:Go to the Labor & Delivery entrance. Your support person will go in with you, and will be screened for COVID-19 symptoms. At that time, your support person can move the car to the parking area.
Planning for Your Stay During the Pandemic
Can my support person come and go from the hospital?
One support person, who is identified at admission, is allowed to be with you. This person is encouraged to stay with you as much as possible and may leave the Women’s Center and return one time during your stay. Your support person will be screened upon re-entry to the hospital. This applies to COVID-19 negative patients only.
When my support person leaves the hospital, what is the process?
They will need to communicate with the staff at the Nurse’s Station.
If my support person is unable to stay the entire stay, can I have another support person?
Your support person should plan to stay with you for the duration of your hospital stay. No substitutions can be accommodated.
Can my support person use my shower?
Can any of my children or parents come to visit the baby and me in the hospital?
No. Visitors other than your support person are not allowed at this time.
I want to hire a Doula. Can I have my support person and a Doula?
With the exception of Northside Hospital Gwinnett, Northside Atlanta, Cherokee and Forsyth are not able to accommodate an additional support person at this time.
Is there a restriction on how many bags we can bring? Can my support person bring a suitcase?
There is no restriction on how many bags you can bring. Your support person should bring what he/she needs for the entire stay.
Are there any restrictions on bringing in snacks/food?
No, however, refrigeration is not available.
During Your Hospital Stay
Do I have to wear a mask in Labor and Delivery?
Yes. You and your support person must wear your masks in the hallways and any time a health care provider enters your room. We are asking that your support person stay in the room with you at all times except for when he or she leaves the room to obtain food. He or she must wear their mask at all times when outside of your room. This also includes Postpartum and the NICU units.
Will I be able to practice skin-to-skin with my baby after birth?
The Golden Hour is the first hour you and your baby have together. During this time, your baby will be directly on your chest so that you both can benefit from skin-to-skin contact. If you are unfamiliar with skin-to-skin, read more about it.
Will my baby stay in the room with me?
We encourage rooming in to foster bonding, time spent skin-to-skin with the baby on your chest and breastfeeding. Most couples find this helps them learn all they can before they go home. Your baby will be weighed every 24 hours and will be seen by a pediatrician within 24 hours after birth.
Will someone help me with breastfeeding?
The Golden Hour is the best time to begin breastfeeding. Our nurses are all prepared to help you get started. Skin-to-skin really helps with getting breastfeeding off to a great start. We encourage babies to breastfeed without interruption for first feeding.Find additional resources and information about breastfeeding.
- Northside Atlanta, Cherokee, Forsyth: In addition to your nurse, lactation consultants are available and will see first time moms within 24 hours of your baby’s birth started.
- Northside Gwinnett: The lactation consultant will see all NICU moms and any moms who have a consult. Baby-Friendly encourages baby to go to breast as soon as possible after delivery for as long as baby needs to breast feed.
Will my pediatrician come to check my baby daily?
Yes. Your pediatrician or nurse practitioner will come to see you or call you after the exam to discuss your baby and answer any questions you may have.
Will I complete paperwork for a birth certificate?
You will be given a birth certificate worksheet by your nurse. Please remember to complete the birth certificate worksheet in its entirety and give it to your nurse or to the birth certificate office. Birth certificates are created by the state. The creation of the birth certificate triggers the creation of a social security number.
Preparing to Go Home
How will I know when I am ready to go home?
The staff will discuss discharge readiness with you each shift and ensure you are ready to be discharged.
How do I care for myself and my baby once we are at home?
We have designed educational resources to help you understand what to expect in the days and weeks following your delivery. The New Beginning: Your Personal Guide to Mom and Baby Care (English)(Spanish) isdesigned to help guide you through what comes next during your postpartum period.
Do I need to have a car seat?
Georgia law requires all children under the age of 8 use a car seat. Northside Hospital does not provide car seats. Install your baby’s car seat base properly into your car before arriving at the hospital. Your car manual should provide some guidance on how to install the car seat into your car. Our staff is not permitted to assist with car seat installation or securing the baby in the car seat. If you have additional questions about car seat safety, visit safekidsgeorgia.org/carseats.
Do I have to have a pediatrician already picked out?
Yes. We recommend all patients have their pediatrician picked out before admission to the hospital. If your pediatrician doesn’t come to Northside and you are using one of the Northside pediatricians, you need to have your follow-up (after discharge) pediatrician’s name, address and phone number with you.
Does everyone who will spend time with my baby need a Tdap vaccination?
Yes. Anyone that will be around your baby will need an up-to-date Tdap vaccination. Whooping Cough can be life threatening for infants and is preventable. Learn more at aboutwhoopingcough.com.