The birth of your baby is one of the most exciting and life changing events you will experience. The Westmead Birth Unit staff feel privileged to share this special occasion with you. We are here to support you and can provide you with midwifery and obstetric care for a variety of pregnancy, labour and birth needs. More than 5,500 families choose to birth their babies at Westmead Hospital each year. We are proud of our commitment to partner with families and provide a service that will meet your individualised needs through this important life event.
Women come to the Birth Unit for a number of reasons:
Labour and Birth Care
- Assessment and management of pregnancy concerns after 20 weeks gestation
- Pregnant women and women who have birthed who require more intensive care than can be provided on a maternity ward.
Westmead Hospital is a level 6 tertiary referral hospital. Women and babies from throughout New South Wales are also referred for care of complex pregnancies.
You will find Birth Unit on level 3, G-Block at Westmead Hospital. We are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. To get to the Birth Unit, you can enter the hospital through the main entrance and take the lift or stairs to level 3. From there, follow the signs to the Birth Unit.
Westmead Hospital has parking and there is a cost involved. During business hours, parking can be very difficult, it may be easier for you to come by bus or train when you have an appointment. The train station and bus stops are within easy walking distance of the hospital. Parking is patrolled by security and fines will be issued for illegal parking.
Before coming to birth unit, please call 8890-6663 or 8890-7395. This helps us to plan for your care before you arrive. A midwife will answer your call and provide you with advice. You will need to give the midwife your medical record number (MRN) located on the top right hand corner of your antenatal card. Please call the Birth Unit for the following reasons:
- You are in labour or have questions about your labour
- Your Waters have broken
- You are bleeding (more than a show)
- Your baby’s movements have decreased/changed/stopped
- You don’t feel well
We are concerned about the wellbeing of you and your baby so please do not hesitate to ring if you have concerns.
Please note that all enquiries regarding clinic appointments should be directed to the Women’s Health Clinic.
- Antenatal card
- Medicare card
- Personal items – toiletries
- Comfortable clothing for labouring
- Clothes for after birth (include a nightie)
- Snacks and drinks for yourself and your support people
- Meals for support people
- Baby clothes
- Sanitary Pads (maternity)
- Phone and charger
- Swimmers for support person
Birth unit does not have visiting hours as women labour any hour of the day and night. Support people are chosen by you and we respect your decisions. When it is an appropriate time for family to visit, you can notify our midwives. We are aware birth is an intimate event and realise you may also wish to have other family and children included at this time. If you choose to have your children present at your birth, it is important that you have a support person available to care for them.
You will be welcomed to the birth unit by our team. Our staff include midwives, nurses, obstetricians, doctors, anaesthetists, allied health care workers, social workers, paediatricians, students and others. We understand that you may prefer female carers however, it is important to be aware that our team includes male midwives, doctors, anaesthetists, paediatricians and students. The most appropriate person provides your care. Safety is our priority.
We have 13 rooms, each with their own bathroom with shower and toilet, 8 of these have birth baths which can be used during your labour as well as to birth your baby. Midwives are happy to discuss your options and will support you with your birth preferences. We have birth balls, birth stools and birth mats designed to help you through your labour.
Following the birth of your baby we encourage you to leave your baby lying on your chest ‘skin to skin’, this will provide many benefits for you and your baby (add link to ‘Skin to Skin’ fact sheet). We understand that you will be excited by your baby’s arrival and keen to learn his/her weight and introduce him/her to family members, You cannot however replace this first hour after the birth and the importance of the skin to skin time so we ask you to be patient for your babies benefit. You will be given assistance to feed your baby provided refreshments and when appropriate you will be assisted to the shower. Our staff will attend to your needs to help you either transfer to the postnatal ward or go home from birth unit with organised visits from our Midwifery @ Home service
Westmead Hospital is a centre of excellence for women with complicated pregnancies. Each year many women are transferred to our unit from around New South Wales for care. We understand that this can be a stressful time for families especially when there are other children in the family. Please discuss any special concerns you have with our staff. There are also a number of women booked for care at Auburn hospital where women will receive their pregnancy care from Auburn, birth at Westmead and then transfer back to Auburn for their postnatal care.
- A free and confidential interpreter service, including Auslan, is available 24 hours, 7 days a week.
Ask staff to arrange an interpreter for you.
- Carers provide care and unpaid assistance to others. They may be family members, friends or neighbours.
Please tell staff if you have a carer.
- All our health facilities and grounds are 100% smoke free. Fines apply. The Quitline can help you stop smoking,
- Parking is available on the hospital campus for a fee.