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What is the purpose of a sample birth plan?

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Quick Answer

The purpose of a birth plan is to provide the doctor with a patient's preferences regarding the type of labor, delivery and postnatal care, Babycenter explains. The plan often includes preferences like having a home or hospital birth or using a doula or midwife.

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Full Answer

The sample birth plan also has information about the patient's desired pain-relief medication, if any, informs Babycenter. If a woman wishes a completely natural vaginal delivery, the birth plan should contain that information. It is a sample birth plan because events are liable to change. If medical intervention is needed, a woman may need to attend hospital for a C-section, even if it is not intended. However, medical personnel try to stick to the birth plan as much as possible.

A good reason to have the birth plan written down or printed is so the doctor remembers the woman's preferences, notes Babycenter. It is not uncommon for the health care provider to need the plan when in the midst of a delivery. If the primary doctor is not available, the attending doctor can see the birth plan and try to ensure it is followed as much as possible. One way the birth plan might not go as intended is if the pregnancy and delivery are considered high-risk.

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