When should I call my doctor or midwife, or come to the hospital?

Please go to the Assessment Room or call your doctor/midwife immediately if you experience any of the following symptoms:

  • A strong headache that is not getting better even after you’ve taken acetaminophen (such as Tylenol)
  • Strong, sudden and constant pain in your abdomen 
  • Your vision is blurry or you see spots in front of your eyes that last more than 30 minutes
  • A burning sensation or pain when you pee
  • Chills or fever more than 38 degrees Celsius
  • If you faint
  •  If your water breaks and the fluid looks green/yellow
  • Your baby moves less than usual – after 32 weeks you should feel at least 6 movements in a 2-hour period
  • Bleeding bright red, similar to a period, with or without pain
  • Severe or prolonged vomiting
  • Change in colour to your skin or the whites of your eyes
  • Calf pain accompanied by tenderness and warm to touch
  • Difficulty walking that requires assistance from another person
  • If there is a significant change in how you are feeling since your last prenatal appointment and you have concerns that cannot wait until your next appointment.

*The Assessment Room is located in the General site’s (4001 Leslie Street) Labour and Delivery Department, 2nd floor, South East wing.

Other non-urgent reasons to visit the Assessment Room or call your health care provider include:

  • You are having contractions that are strong, regularly spaced apart, and you are having trouble distracting yourself during them
  • If your water breaks
  • If you cannot contact your health care provider for any reason and you are concerned about yourself or the baby
  • If your health care provider tells you to come to the hospital
  • If you are cramping or your water breaks and you are booked for a c-section, do not eat or drink until you have been seen in the Assessment Room.

Note: Pinkish mucous discharge “show” may indicate that labour will start soon. However, “show” sometimes occurs a few days before labour begins. You may also experience some “bloody show” following a vaginal examination by your health care provider. It is not necessary to call your health care provider or come to the hospital at this stage if this is your only symptom.

What will happen when I arrive at the hospital?

  • Come directly to Labour and Delivery on the second floor (Follow the signs to the birthing centre).
  • Check in at the front desk of the main nursing station.
  • You will be directed to our assessment area where a preliminary check will be done. You will then be triaged, similar to the way patients are seen in an emergency department. Patients are assessed according to severity.
  • Once you have been assessed, the health care team will decide whether you will be admitted to the hospital or will return home.

If I go back home, when should I return to the hospital?

  • Before going back home, the doctor, nurse or midwife will discuss when you should return to the hospital.
  • If you have a concern about yourself or your baby, please return to the Assessment Room at any time.
  • There is no limit to the number of times you may visit the Assessment Room.

What should I bring when I come to the hospital?

  • Bring your labour kit and suitcase to the hospital. Please leave them in the car; you will not need them in the Assessment Room. They can be picked up later, once you are admitted to a birthing suite.
  • Don’t forget to bring your health card.

If you have a minor issue or something not related to pregnancy, you can see your family practitioner.