Labor & Delivery
It’s no secret that new and expectant families in our community trust REX. In fact, we deliver more babies than any other hospital in the Triangle!
Personalized Labor & Delivery Care
We know that choosing a birth center and obstetrician or midwife to deliver your baby are important decisions for both you and your family. You can trust our highly skilled and experienced labor and delivery team. They’ll listen to you and make every effort to give you the birth experience you want, while keeping your baby safe and happy.
Choose our Birth Center for your labor, delivery, and recovery to take advantage of our nurturing environment and comfortable private rooms during this special time.
Your REX Labor and Delivery Team
Whether you anticipate an easy delivery or are considered high-risk, you’ll benefit from the knowledgeable UNC REX experts on your labor and delivery team including:
- Board-certified obstetricians, who will care for you during labor, conventional or C-section delivery, and after birth.
- Maternal-fetal medicine specialists with expertise in high-risk pregnancies and birth complications
- Anesthesiologists, who are available 24 hours a day to help you manage pain.
- Board certified OB hospitalists available 24/7 to care for you during your hospital stay when your primary physician isn’t present or if you don’t have a physician on record.
- Experienced, friendly labor and delivery nurses, who’ll care for you and your baby and use current practices such as delayed bathing.
- Lactation consultants and breast feeding educators, who share breastfeeding expertise
Pain Relief Options During Labor
Talk to your obstetrician about pain relief options during your prenatal care. To manage your pain during labor and delivery, you doctor may prescribe these options available at our birthing center:
- Intravenous pain reliever
- Nitrous oxide gas
You’ll receive support for your pain management preferences from your REX care team and they’ll assist you with breathing, relaxation and other comfort measures.
Specialized & Emergency Maternity Services
If you need fast care and assessment or emergency services during your pregnancy or labor and delivery, our OB emergency department is readily available within the Women’s Center for patients as early as 16 weeks into their pregnancy. Your OB hospitalist and emergency services team also will coordinate care with your OB/GYN.
Prepare for Pregnancy & Birth
View our Pregnancy & Birth information packet [PDF] to learn more about UNC Rex Women’s Center maternity services, how to plan for labor and delivery, and caring for yourself during pregnancy and after childbirth.
What to Expect
Before Going into Labor
As you near your due date, be sure to pack your “labor bag.” You should pack toiletries, contact lens supplies (if needed), snacks for your partner, a camera, a phone charger, telephone numbers of family and friends, and any additional comfort measures you wish to have during your stay at REX.
Also be sure to pack a copy of your advance directives, such as a living will and/or health care power of attorney and print out your Birth Plan [PDF]. Call your insurance company before your due date to review your maternity coverage. View our Financial Aspects of your Care page to learn more about how different services you may receive are billed at REX.
Don't forget to fill out the pre-registration form to help with the check-in process.
Delivering Your Baby
Once you’re in labor, or have a scheduled induction, your obstetrician will instruct you to go to the REX Women’s Center. You and your partner should enter through the Women’s Center lobby and check in at the front desk. They will direct you to the second floor to begin the admission process.
A Cesarean section, or C-section, is the delivery of a baby through a surgical incision in the mother’s abdomen and uterus. A C-section is usually performed when a vaginal delivery would put the baby’s or the mother’s life or health at risk. In some cases a C-section is scheduled in advance, while in others it’s performed as a response to an unforeseen complication. No matter the situation, REX is an excellent choice for this special delivery.
If you’re planning to have a C-section delivery, you’ll come to REX a day or two before your scheduled surgery for pre-admission testing.
On the day of your surgery, you’ll arrive at the Women’s Center registration desk where you will be checked-in and taken to your room. When it’s time for the surgery, you and your partner will head to the operating room while other visitors wait in the lobby.
After your surgery, you’ll be taken to the post anesthesia care unit (PACU) for recovery before being taken to your postpartum room.
The REX Women's Center practices Delayed Bath, which means Mom and Baby have more time together immediately after delivery before the baby is bathed. Delaying your baby's first bath has benefits:
- Promotes fewer interruptions during the first moments after birth
- Gives the newborn time to steady their body temperature and sugar levels
- Preserves the natural moisture of the baby’s skin and decreases infection
- Allows baby to stay skin-to-skin and helps encourage breastfeeding
After delivering your baby, you’ll be taken to your postpartum room and provided with all the information you’ll need for the remainder of your hospital stay. Our staff will assist you with your personal care and recovery, and will answer any questions about your baby’s care. Your physician and pediatric provider will also visit daily to keep you informed of your own and your baby’s progress.
You and your baby will remain together throughout your hospital stay unless the baby needs to be admitted to the NICU. Our team of doctors, nurses, and lactation consultants are your important resources in helping you learn to care for your baby. Consider downloading our free Pregnancy & Baby app or signing up for our free Pregnancy & Parenting newsletter as both provide information through your baby’s first year of life. If you are breastfeeding, you may also choose to meet with a lactation consultant.
Birth Certificate Information
Our Birth Certificate Registrars will visit you after delivery to obtain information needed for the birth certificate that is filed with the state. Please fill out the information completely and carefully review the working copy they will bring to you. Once you approve the information, they will submit it online to the Vital Records Department. Please make sure that you and your partner have photo identification as certain parts of the birth certificate may require the registrar to notarize them.
Newborn Screening Tests
Several newborn screening tests will be performed on you baby while in the hospital. These are tests required by state law. They include the newborn metabolic screen, hearing screening and critical congenital heart disease screening. Information about the screenings will be provided to you after delivery. You nurse can answer any questions you have about the tests.
When it’s time to go home, you’ll be provided with hospital discharge and prescription instructions from your physician and your baby’s healthcare provider. Discharge time is 11:00 AM. Please make arrangements with your partner or a family member to arrive by 10:00 AM in preparation to go home.
North Carolina state law requires that all infants be fastened in a car seat before leaving the hospital. You can attend our Car Seat Safety Class to learn how to properly install your car seat or have one of our certified child passenger safety technicians inspect your installation.
Our Birth Center staff will be happy to answer any questions you may have about going home. You may find it helpful to have your support person or other family member available to help at home the first couple of days. Our Case Management Team will also be available to help with you with information regarding insurance, home health and other community resources.