Postpartum support in Virginia
We know you may feel both nervous and excited to take your baby home from the hospital. Our goal is to ensure you receive the postpartum support and resources you need to confidently transition home. As part of this, our postpartum care teams at HCA Virginia hospitals support you and your baby after childbirth and throughout the remainder of your hospital stay. During your time with us, we will help you recover from childbirth, learn to care for your new baby and begin to breastfeed (if you desire).
For more information about our primary care services or for help finding a doctor, call our free, 24/7 Consult-A-Nurse line.
Postpartum care services
After labor and delivery, we want to support you in your recovery and caring for your newborn, which is why we offer:
- Skin-to-skin contact—We encourage skin-to-skin contact after birth. Immediately after your baby is born, we will place them bare-skinned on your chest. Skin-to-skin contact has many benefits, including lowering their stress level and regulating their temperature, heart rate and breathing. Getting skin-to-skin contact in the hours after delivery and during your time in the hospital helps boost these benefits.
- Family-centered care—We practice couplet care (also known as "rooming-in"), so you and your family can bond with your baby in a private setting. This means your baby stays with you in the room at all times, even during examinations. Additionally, you and your baby will be cared for by the same nurse.
- Neonatal intensive care—We care for ill and premature newborns in our hospitals' neonatal intensive care units (NICUs). Our NICUs have advanced equipment, and our highly skilled neonatal doctors and nurses deliver family-centered care for your baby.
- Access to donor milk—If your baby needs more breast milk than you can supply, we offer donated breast milk.
- Baby photography—Our hospitals partner with newborn photographers for newborn portraits. If you wish to take advantage of this service, an online gallery of photos will be available for friends and family.
- Postpartum depression support and counseling—It’s natural to feel overwhelmed with the challenges of motherhood, but you don’t have to do it alone. We provide postpartum depression screenings, therapy and treatment services and a 24-Hour Behavioral Health Access Line at (804) 483-0050.
- Help submitting your baby's birth documents—We will help collect and submit information for your baby's birth certificate and Social Security number.
Breastfeeding offers many benefits and is a learned skill for both you and your baby. This is why our teams are committed to providing comprehensive breastfeeding support. If you desire, our lactation consultants will assist you after delivery and throughout your hospital stay to help you and your baby successfully breastfeed.
Some of the health benefits of breastfeeding for newborns include:
- Strengthening their immune system, warding off illnesses and infections
- Protecting against some chronic health conditions, such as Type 2 diabetes and asthma
- Reducing the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS)
We also know that not all mothers choose to breastfeed and, sometimes, breastfeeding just won't work for either mom or baby. In these cases, our lactation consultants can provide advice on healthy bottle feeding, proper formula preparation and other aspects of feeding your baby.
Lactation support after discharge
The Lactation Center of HCA Virginia offers breast pumps and other lactation equipment for rent or purchase, as well as breastfeeding support from lactation consultants. Our lactation consultants are available to you even after you take your baby home, and some of our consultants offer at-home consultations.
To learn more about our lactation support services or for lactation support over the phone, please call The Lactation Center at (804) 289-4977.