Hospital Bag Essentials
- Identification Card (IC) or a picture ID such as driver’s license for both daddy and mummy. Both ICs will be needed if you want to register your baby’s name at the hospital.
- Birth Plan, if you have one
- Cord Blood Donation Consent
- Original Marriage certificate to register your baby’s name. (*You can register at the hospital or at Immigration and Custom Authority (ICA). Birth should be registered within 14 days from the date of birth, including Sundays and public holidays. If registration is done after 42 days, a letter of explanation stating the reason for late registration must be submitted for the Registrar/Registrar General’s approval.)
- Receipts for pre-delivery medical expenses such as consultations and tests. You have to submit these receipts during registration to claim from Medisave Maternity Package.
- Insurance card or any hospital paperwork, letters or test results
- Contact information to inform the confinement lady, confinement meal provider (TMC Activation), prepacked herbal set delivery (Laobanniang) and postnatal massage lady.
- Comfortable Nursing or Supportive Bras x 2. During the first few days after delivery, your breasts are likely to be tender and swollen when your milk comes in. Breast pads can help absorb leaks. (I didn’t wear this and went bra-less.)
- Breast Pads (My milk didn’t come in until I was discharged from the hospital, National University Hospital “NUH”.)
- Disposable Underwear (I wore the ones NUH provided.)
- Sanitary Pads (I wore the maternity pad loops NUH provided, Intimate brand. I quite like it!)
- Sweater/Cardigan (It wasn’t cold for me, so I didn’t wear it.)
- Warm Socks (It wasn’t cold for me, so I didn’t wear it.)
- Going home outfit and a pair of flat, comfortable shoes upon discharge. Bring something roomy and easy to get into. Something you can fit into at about 5 or 6 months pregnant (you will post-pregnancy bulge). (I wore the roomy dress I wore to hospital.)
- Flip Flop/Slippers. This is to wear into the bathroom and to wear for shower. (This proves to be useful!)
- Pyjamas/Nightdresses. That is if you prefer your own, bring those with front openings if breastfeeding. (I wore the ones NUH provided.)
- Eye mask if you have trouble sleeping with lights on. (Good to have but not necessary)
- Eyeglasses and if you want, your contact lenses, along with storage case and solution. The glasses might fog up during labour.
- Nipple Cream
- Toothbrush and toothpaste
- Hairbrush, hair tie
- Facial wash
- Plastic bags to contain the dirty clothes
- Soap, shampoo, towels and lotion. Hospitals usually provide them but you might prefer your own.
Labour Good to Have
- Things to pass time and relax: bible, books, magazines, tablet, your own pillow, music, a picture of someone or something you love, etc.
- Snacks: Fruit juices, sweets, biscuits, fresh or dried fruit, nuts, granola bars, etc.
- Sponge or water spray to cool you down (optional)
- Inflatable float (optional)
- Loose clothing, nightgown, slippers, and socks. Hospitals provide gowns and socks during labor and afterward, but most allow you to wear your own clothes. Prepare sleeveless or short, loose sleeves gown that’s comfortable and one you don’t mind getting dirty.
- Receiving blanket/towel/baby blanket to keep him or her warm on the way home. The hospital will provide blankets to swaddle your baby during your stay.
- Going home outfit
- Caps, Mittens, and Booties
- Burp Rag
- Car seat. Install the seat ahead of time and know how to buckle your infant.
- Camera or/and Video Camera with batteries, charger, and memory card. Make sure your camera is fully charged. (Note: Not all hospitals allow videotaping of the birth itself.)
- Mobile phone and charger
- Coins for the hospital’s vending machine
- Change of clothes, slippers and toiletries
- Snacks and something to read
Good to Have
- Disposable Liner for you to sit on in case your water bag breaks on the way to hospital.
- Breast pump. The nurses will teach you how to use it. Or your hospital can provide one if you need. (On hindsight, pack light and omit this if you are comfortable)
- Milk storage bags / containers (My milk didn’t come in so soon for me to use them.)
- Notebook and pen or Mobile Apps that help to track your baby’s feeding sessions. Also a good tool to note down what the pediatrician tells you or journal memories. (I used Glow Baby app and it’s good so far!)
- Box of chocolates or yummy treats for the nurses.
- Fun idea: Pick up a newspaper on the day of your baby’s birth for souvenir headlines and articles.
- Photos of your other children so that they know you haven’t forgetten them.
- Gifts for older siblings, for the new baby to “give” to them.
What Not to Bring
- Lots of cash or other valuables
- Medications, including vitamins. Let your doctor know if you are on medications and the hospital will provide according to the doctor’s instructions.
- Diapers. The hospital will provide diapers for your baby while you’re there.
Has this list been useful? Did I miss out any item? Feel free to leave your comment below.