Do you guys read birth plans?

  1. I'm putting together a birth plan to give my OB in a couple of weeks. I had one for my first, but I never had a chance to give it to my OB when I PROMed @ 36 weeks.
    So I'm wondering, would I be wasting my time and paper? I do want to have things explicitly known by the nursing staff, like no e-mycin gtts, no bottles, ect.
    I know I read living wills on charts, but that's a differnet slice of cake.

    Thanks for any feedback!
    •  
  2. 80 Comments

  3. by   fergus51
    Make a copy or 2 and bring it with you when you go into labor. That's the only way I would be sure that your nurses have read it.
  4. by   LDRN697
    At my hospital most of birth plans are reviewed in the doc's office then by my nurse manager and then put with your prenatal record at the hospital. On admission tell your nurse you have a birth plan(bring an extra copy just in case). You may have to sign certain forms waivng fetal monitoring, refusing certain meds, etc.
  5. by   BugRN
    Most definately bring your birth plan with you. Yes it will be read. Make sure everyone knows you have one. One thing to keep in mind is be as specific as you want to make the birth exactly what you want it to be, but be prapared for anything and remain flexible. My experience has been that parents get so focused on carrying out the birth plan to the letter, that they lose sight of the "Birth". These same folks get very disapointed if it goes any differently. We used to say that "the more rigid a plan was it was a section waiting to happen". Know what you'll give in on and what's important. Good luck!!!
  6. by   rdhdnrs
    The only thing I would add is to be sure why you want the things you're asking for in your birth plan. I have taken care of patients who get pretty defensive and hostile when asked the rationale for not using emycin, etc. I think the majority of labor and delivery nurses are willing to work with parents as far as they can. The main thing is not to approach the hospital personnel with the attitude that you are going to tell them how to do their job. Good luck with your new baby.
  7. by   fiestynurse
    I read birth plans, but they all pretty much say the same thing. In addition, we already do most of the things that mother's are requesting. As far as refusing certain things, like e-mycin for the eyes, that is usually discussed with the pediatrician and a waiver must be signed, since the end result could mean blindness.
    And we really don't do anything invasive without consulting you first. For example, we need informed consent before circumcising your baby. Open communication is key in any birthing situation, so I guess birth plans are helpful in that sense.
  8. by   NewbornNurseRN
    Good Luck.....I hope birth plan goes well.........I am a Nursery Nurse and every time we get a birth plan something goes wrong........cold stress, low blood sugars.....things like that........I hope yours goes well......

    Sherry
  9. by   jrmcdoug2
    Honestly, I agee with Sherrie. One time we had a mom who was GBS+ and knew she was and refused treatment prenatally. She ended up rupturing i think and the baby was very big so he was hypoglycemic, she did not want us to check his glucose, bathe him......nothing. He ended up in the unit and almost died of meningitis. Most, not all birth plan prepared couple have the complicated deliveries. It's like an omen almost.
  10. by   shay
    Oooohhh. Birth plans. Yes. I read them. Always. Absolutely.

    Here's my take....as an OB nurse. Be reasonable. Write your birthplan with the thought in mind that things can go very wrong without cause or warning in labor and delivery. You obviously know this since you PROM'ed @ 36wks. with your first.

    It's the folks who write the birth plans with the assumption/attitude that nothing can possibly go wrong...you know, 'that won't happen to me.' that scare me the most. The nursery nurses are right. It's the folks with the longest, most restrictive, most don't-do-this-and-don't-do-that birth plans where the most stuff goes wrong. There's an old legend in OB...the length of the birth plan is directly proportional to the severity of the complications that will arise.

    Birth revolves around 2 things....a uterus and a fetus. Neither can read directions and neither follows instruction very well. They have minds of their own.

    Just be flexible, work with your MD and nurses. Keep in mind that you will probably have to deviate from 'the plan' at one point or another. And that's okay. Folks who have the attitude that the birth plan is just a rough draft/outline of things they would LIKE and not a rigid 'game plan' are the ones who are the most successful and pleased with their birth experience.

    Congratulations in advance!!
  11. by   NewbornNurseRN
    Shay,

    I couldn't have said it any better........u are right on girl!!!!

    Sherry
    Knoxville
  12. by   Goodlaura6
    Birth Plans are ALWAYS read. Sometimes laughed at! Find out what is normally done at the hospital you plan to give birth in, only put things you want done differently in your plan. In other words, they may already do what you want done, therefore no need for the plan (Those types get laughed at most) and remember, your Doctor/CNM is the one you need to get a birth plan squared away with (and all the partners)!!! All nurses will honor your birth plan if they possibly can. I've read ones that tell how many hours they want each stage of labor to last ... that's out of the nurses controll!!! Be reasonable and you'll have no problems!
    Last edit by Goodlaura6 on Feb 6, '02
  13. by   Hardknox
    As an OB nurse I can vouch for everything that has been said. We always read the birth plans and for some reason most of what is asked for is what we already do. Many plans seem to be fill-in's from BIRTHPLANS.com or some such site. We will accomodate the parents in everything that is SAFELY possible and are there to help, not to thwart your wishes. Be aware that things do go wrong and you do want a live, healthy Mom and baby. And yes, the longer the birth plan the surer the complications. It's like Murphy's law!
    Last edit by Hardknox on Feb 10, '02
  14. by   rdhdnrs
    Since I replied to this post earlier, I had a patient with a birth plan who didn't want hep b vaccine for the baby and when I asked her husband about it, he informed me that he didn't have to discuss that with me. Of course she wanted the dim lights and the no noise and the no pain meds and no iv. She ended up severe preeclamptic with pit and and epidural and eventually a c-section. The dad stood in the hallway bawling when informed of the need for the section. Just be reasonable and keep in mind the outcome every mother wants-a healthy child and a healthy mom. The way I look at it, when things go wrong, patients should just thank God there is someone in the vicinity who CAN perform a section, and that we have the technology to overcome bad outcomes. In the good old days of all home births, there were many funerals after 48-hour labors, shoulder dystocias, and breech babies, not to mention eclamptics, and babies who died in infancy from childhood illnesses for which we now have prevention.
    Sorry to ramble. This is obviously a concern for me, since we have had so many people come in to us in horrible shape after home birth went bad.
    My main point is don't become so set on the PROCESS of giving birth that you lose sight of the result you want, which is your baby in your arms.
    Good luck.

close