Denmark - Pregnancy and Birth
In Denmark you can chose to give birth in the public hospital or at home.
No private birth clinics exist.
In Denmark most people give birth in the public hospital.
Should you be already pregnant when arriving in Denmark, as soon as you have received your national health insurance card, meet with the assigned (or chosen) family doctor, so the doctor can register you into the system immediately.
Your doctor will most probably be the one confirming your pregnancy and subsequently refer you to a midwife. You will be attended to regularly, during your pregnancy, by the midwife who, if possible, will also assist you during the birth, but also by your family doctor.
Birth preparation classes are offered to parents which most expecting fathers attend too. It is common for fathers to be present at the birth, if they wish.
Giving birth is considered a natural event, not a medical condition, which means there are no doctors present unless the midwife sees it necessary, in case of complications.
Once your child is born you are encouraged to care for the baby yourself. Nurses are always available to guide and help you, should you need it. In some countries the baby is taken away, and sleeps in another room but that is not the case in Denmark.
Every baby sleeps in his cot, right next to the mother's bed. Should you have had a long tiresome birth the nurses will of course take care of your child, and let you get your strength back. After normal, not complicated births, women who have given birth for the first time can stay for a couple of days.
If it is your second or third child, you are encouraged to leave within a day or two.
Once back home with your new baby the home nurse will already have been informed, and will get in touch with you. She will visit at your home, make sure you are ok, monitor your baby's health and advice you should you have any doubts or queries, during most of the first year of your child's life.
Birth at home
Women who experience a normal pregnancy, with no signs of complications, can chose to give birth at home. In the case of 'home birth' the procedures are not much different than a hospital birth. You inform your doctor, and your midwife will, together with you, assure the preparations are up to the required standard, which is similar to the one in the hospital.
Birth in water
In the last 10 years the number of women who chose to give birth in water has increased. If you wish to do so, talk with your doctor and midwife. Again the midwife will assist you with the preparations. You need to ensure that the hospital has a 'birth-tub' available.
Registering your child
The midwife will fill in the birth registration forms as soon as you have given birth. These forms need to be handed in at the church office in your area, no later than 14 days after the birth.
Note: Whether you go to church or not, you must deliver the birth registration papers, you got from the midwife, in the church office. It has nothing to do with religion.
For the naming of your child, please refer to the document Born Abroad.