This printable fill-in-the-blank birth plan template will help you communicate with the medical team what support you would like. Avoid misunderstanding by spelling out in advance your customized birth plan. Your doctor, midwife, nurse, doula birthing center or hospital will really appreciate it!
Creating a Birth Plan
What is a birth plan?
A birth plan allows you to make choices in advance and communicate them to your health care team at your chosen delivery destination. Of course, you can/may change your mind at any time — it just is a quick way to share what you’d prefer.
Printable Birth Plan Template
This printable worksheet is going to go over what is most frequently on birth plans and you might want to consider before you head into a delivery.
I have no clue what I want on my birth plan!
I know, the hospital is a pretty foreign place — and we certainly speak a foreign language!
I do briefly cover the information in that email I’ll send you, but if you’re looking for more info — all of the items in the birth plan are covered in my online prenatal class.
I believe that all couples need a prenatal class and I created my own to simplify labor from your couch. I want all of my patients as comfortable as possible at the hospital, and now you don’t even have to fight traffic to do it!
Psst, today you can even save 10% with code PC10.
Honestly, birth plans are something I encounter frequently. Although, not as often as some people think. I would guess maybe 5% of our patients have a birth plan where I am now. I would think the number would be closer to 2% at my last hospital (different populations).
I think this free printable birth plan template will help you solidify plans for your birth — so it’s great for that!
Also, I have a video all about what a birth plan is:
Things Most Often on a Birth Plan
Birth plan questions for labor:
Induction — if you want one, or would prefer none
Pitocin – both for your induction or afterward
What you plan to wear — our gown or your own clothes/gown
Are you OK with an IV? IV’s are the general standard of care at the hospital
How do you want to position yourself in labor — Sitting, standing, laying on the bed, etc?
Do you hope to eat in labor?
Who do you prefer to be in your room at delivery
Birth plan questions for after delivery:
Do you want the baby medications for after delivery?
Do you want the baby skin to skin after delivery (this is standard of care as long as baby/mom are well)
Do you want the baby to have a bath (or when do you want it to have a bath?)
Are you planning to breast or bottle-feed?
Do you plan to use a pacifier?
**Clearly there are plenty of other items then this that could be on your birth plan, but these are the most frequent ones.
What do nurses think of birth plans?
**I have been a labor nurse since 2001, and this is just what I have experienced from those who have birth plans — you might find the insight helpful**
Keep in mind that due to policies and procedures we require certain things of our staff in the hospital. So, even if you prefer certain things, it might be good to review it with your doctor in advance to make sure that he/she is OK with all of it.
I constantly wish I could just deliver babies without policies or charting or worries. But, lawyers have made that a thing of the past.
Just remember that your nurse is on your team. She wants the same thing you do — a healthy mom and baby. It’s no good trying to fight it. 😉
One page printable birth plan
You might also be interested in my hospital packing checklist:
This post was originally written November 2012, but has been updated.