Emergency Department

202 S. Park St.
Madison, WI 53715

Current Estimated Wait:

Preparing for Childbirth

Every pregnancy and birth is a unique, life-changing event. That is why UnityPoint Health – Meriter is committed to providing you with the information you need, the best possible care, and a comfortable environment where you are treated with warmth and respect.

Pre-Register for Your Hospital Stay 

You can securely pre-register online for your hospital stay by filling out our Hospital Pre-registration Form. 

Birth Preferences 

Download and complete the Birth Preferences form. Writing your birth preferences will help you to consider the many decisions you will make during your labor and postpartum time in the hospital. It will also enable you to communicate your ideas and philosophy to your doctor, nurse midwife, the nursing staff and your support people. 

Tour the Birthing Center

Free virtual tours of our birthing center are available online for all expectant parents and their support through this link

Prenatal and Parenting Classes 

We offer a wide variety of prenatal and parenting classes that will help you through the journey of childbirth and beyond. Topics include childbirth, newborn care, breastfeeding, parenting and breastfeeding support and more. Register for Classes and Events online, or inquire at MSN_FamilyHealth@unitypoint.org.

Breastfeeding Supplies and Support 

Meriter provides many resources to help you have a successful breastfeeding experience, including a Basics of Breastfeeding class, lactation consultants and a Breastfeeding Helpline with specially trained lactation consultants. 

Test Your Water

Well Water - If you have well water, it is very important to have it tested to be sure it is safe for your baby. A high nitrate content will decrease the ability of a baby's blood to carry oxygen. Bacteria in the water can cause vomiting and diarrhea. Boiling well water may kill the bacteria, but it also increases the nitrate level. 

City Water - If your home was built before 1985 have your water tested for lead. If your home is new, have your water tested for copper. 

How to Test - The local agencies that test water are: 

  • State Lab Hygiene - (800) 442-4618. Water testing kits for well and city water are available for a small fee.
  • Public Health for Madison and Dane County - (608) 266-4821. Water testing kits for well and city water are available for a small fee. Fees are waived for Dane County residents who meet income eligibility standards.