Giving birth in China and what to bring to the hospital

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Chinese hospital bag for moms in labor

As my due date is getting closer and closer, a bit over month to go now, I’ve been wondering what I need to bring with me to the hospital. In a Finnish hospital lot of things would be just given to me, but in a Chinese hospital you need to buy these items your self.

First of all you need your passport, hospital card and medical records. I’ve understood that these are needed when I will arrive to the hospital.

The first thing you need to buy is the hospital bag that is sold in your hospital, it’s called a 待产包 dàichănbāo in Chinese. The reason you need to buy these items from the hospital you will give birth in, is that the nurses are most familiar with their own bag and know how to use the products inside. So what’s included? I was surprised to find out it only included disposable underpads, maternity sanitary napkins and ID tags for your wrist.

Of course this isn’t enough! You will usually be spending at least two days in the hospital so many other items are also needed to make your birthing experience a bit more comfortable (is that even possible?). According to chats with other moms and researching the Chinese internet, I’ve found the following items to be important:

  • Toilet paper
  • Hand soap, shampoo and conditioner, toothbrush and toothpaste, deodorant, a comb
  • Wet napkins
  • Towel or two
  • Water cup or a bottle
  • Disposable or otherwise comfortable underwear
  • Newborn diapers
  • Slippers
  • Breastfeeding bra and pads
  • Snacks for you and the new dad
  • Clothes for you and the baby to wear when coming home

I haven’t put together my hospital bag yet, but as I’m already 34 weeks pregnant now, I should do it soon! Anything important that I forgot from my list?