The Antenatal Home Care Program (AHCP) is a team of nurses that provide home visits to women experiencing certain conditions in pregnancy as previously outlined.
Women on the program receive daily contact to monitor their health and their baby's health. During the visit the woman can expect:
At the first home visit a review of your overall health will be done. This includes reviewing your prenatal record and recent lab results, asking some health history questions, and about the sign and symptoms of the condition you are being followed. A check of vital signs (temperature, pulse, blood pressure) as well as listening to fetal heart(s), along with observing for condition specific symptoms will be done at all visits.
The visiting nurse will provide information and teaching, discuss signs and symptoms to watch for and give some instructions about when to call the doctor or go to the obstetrical triage unit where you will be delivering. Prenatal education on a variety of topics is also available using different formats including in person conversation and print/online resources.
Each visit is an opportunity to ask the nurse questions, discuss changes in your routine and learn about community programs and resources that may be helpful to you.
Coordination of care
Fetal assessment, lab testing and consultation with your health care provider are part of your care while on the program. The nurses will work with you and on your behalf and communicate with your health care providers as needed to help you and your baby be healthy during your pregnancy.
What is expected from me as a patient on the AHCP?
- While you are on this program, you will be in contact with a member of your health care team every day.
- The program nurse will visit you on the days you are not seen by your doctor or the Fetal Assessment Unit (FAU). Your nurse will call you in the morning to confirm the time of the visit. The nurse will check you and your baby at your home or where you are staying.
- You will see your doctor and attend the FAU regularly. At the FAU you will have an ultra-sound scan to check your baby's growth and well-being.
- You will be asked to monitor for symptoms related to your condition. If you have high blood pressure, arrangements will be made to provide you with a blood pressure monitor. If you have PPROM, arrangements will be made for you to obtain a thermometer.
- Monitoring your baby's movements is an important part of your self-monitoring. Checking your baby's movements
- A chart will be given to you to keep track of your monitoring
- Take your chart with you to your doctor and FAU visits. They will want to review your progress.
- A reduced activity level may be required while you are on the program. Women who are working or going to school may need to stop or modify these activities.
- On the day that you attend the FAU you may be asked to go to the lab to have blood drawn and drop off a urine test. Your program nurse will provide the supplies you need to complete this lab work.
- Depending on how you are doing and your doctor's assessment, phone calls from the program nurse may replace some of your home visits, or you may be discharged from the program if you remain stable.
- If you have high blood pressure, once you are home following delivery, you will resume your monitoring and be followed by the AHCP for up to 14 days.