Discussion with your GP
Once you know or suspect you are pregnant it is advised to see your GP as soon as possible.
If you choose to have your baby at South West Healthcare, your doctor will refer you to the Women’s Health Service (WHS) for ongoing specialist care.
If you are experiencing problems in early pregnancy (i.e. nausea and vomiting, pain, bleeding) or your pregnancy is complicated by other existing health concerns, your GP can request an early pregnancy assessment (EPAS).
Things your GP will talk to you about in this appointment
- Previous obstetric and gynaecology information including previous pregnancies, miscarriages, pap smear status
- Your medical history, and also your family history which might include factors such as asthma, diabetes, genetic conditions, heart problems, cancer etc
- Your emotional health and wellbeing
- The doctor may also ask about any circumstances in your life that may affect your pregnancy, this is to ensure that all women are offered the most appropriate information and support, tailored to them
- Review any medications you are taking (including natural and alternative medicines) to ensure they are safe to use in pregnancy
- Ensure you are taking necessary pregnancy vitamins
Early pregnancy testing & examinations
Your GP will conduct and arrange a variety of tests for you:
- Blood tests and a urine test, all of which are intended to protect you and your baby’s health. See list of routine pregnancy bloods and tests in investigations in early pregnancy.
- Prenatal testing will also be discussed. Screening for Down syndrome and other genetic disorders should be discussed and arranged if needed. Each test should be explained in detail however it is your decision whether or not to have these tests. There is a time constraint on some of these tests, so depending on when your first visit is with the Women’s Health Service your GP may need to arrange these tests for you, and therefore follow up these results for you.
- Ultrasounds- Your doctor may order two separate ultrasounds for you. The first is a dating scan to measure your growing pregnancy and help determine the date your baby is due. The second is the Nuchal Translucency test which is part of prenatal testing if desired.
Referral to the South West Healthcare Women’s Health Service
Once your pregnancy is confirmed with your GP, your GP will send an antenatal referral to the Women’s Health Service (WHS). This is a public service, located at the Warrnambool Base Hospital.
Once the WHS receive your referral they will send you a letter via email or post to book your first antenatal appointment with your midwife (usually at around 8-10 weeks via Telehealth) and a second in-person appointment to see a doctor (usually around 10-12 weeks).
Speciality referral for antenatal care – GP Referral form.
Page last updated: 18 October 2022