The months, weeks and days preceding your baby's birth will be an exciting, joyful time filled with many physical and emotional changes. This is a natural time for you to learn more about pregnancy, childbirth and parenting.
The BirthPlace offers a comprehensive educational program to help improve your birthing experience and ease your transition to parenthood. Our program includes a variety of prenatal and postpartum classes for you, your partner or support person, your other children, grandparents and/or other relatives, depending on the topic. Topics include childbirth preparation, breast-feeding, baby care, infant CPR and safety, and parenting support. This page contains an overview of our tour and classes. Unless otherwise indicated, the classes require registration. You can bring one support person with you to your classes. See our class schedule, register and pay for classes. For questions regarding tours and classes, call (424)259-8250. (Classes are held at UCLA Medical Center, Santa Monica)
This overview of The BirthPlace guides you and your partner from admission to discharge and includes a tour of our maternity facilities. Discussion focuses on educational classes, delivery options, special services and family participation.
You are encouraged to attend one of these FREE sessions during your pregnancy. Each session runs approximately 75 minutes. Reservations needed.
One Wednesday each month, 6:30 pm to 9:30 pm
Health professionals agree that breast-feeding newborns is healthier than bottle-feeding them. Additionally, many new mothers opt to breast-feed because it helps foster bonds between them and their newborns.
The BirthPlace offers a specific class on breast-feeding to help you master this important skill. Certified lactation consultants who are knowledgeable about all aspects of breast-feeding teach our class. They cover anatomy and physiology of the breast, nursing positions and effective techniques. Additional topics include nutrition, nipple care, breast pumps, nursing equipment and storage of breast milk.
We encourage partners to attend the class because those who understand breast-feeding concepts and techniques provide better support and understanding.
We recommend you take this class during your last trimester of pregnancy.
Basics of Breastfeeding Class
This class is a preliminary one hour class desinged to introduce pregnant women to breastfeeding. The goals of the class are to demystify the process of breastfeeding, shed some light on common myths of breastfeeding, and to familiarize families with delivery and post-delivery routines at UCLA.
Basics of breastfeeding is offered to patients who are registered to deliver at UCLA for a fee of $20.00. The class is designed to provide basic information to help women get off to a good start with breastfeeding immediately after delivery.
Regardless of where you are delivering at UCLA, you have the option of taking the class at either Westwood or Santa Monica.
Three classes 6:30 pm to 9:30 pm or four classes 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm per weeknight session. One class 8:30 am to 1:30 pm per weekend Intensive course.
This course provides an overview of the labor and delivery process, including 1) beginning labor signs; 2) the different stages; 3) when to leave for the hospital; and 4) what to expect throughout the birthing experience.
The course features both discussion and practice of pain/stress management techniques (breathing, relaxation, positioning, attention-focusing), along with helpful comfort measures. Labor partners are taught proven strategies for physical and emotional support. Medication options, medical intervention and Cesarean births are also covered.
Expectant parents gain vital knowledge to improve their communication and support skills, work effectively with caregivers and participate actively to ensure a positive birthing experience.
Due to high demand and space limitations, you should register at least 3 to 4 months before your due date.
Classes for High-Risk Patients
The BirthPlace also offers Childbirth Preparation classes or related education to high-risk maternity patients being treated for pre-term labor in our Antepartum Unit. With your physicians approval, you may be able to attend regular classes or, if not, at least view tapes covering childbirth instruction. Referrals to instructors for private classes at home or in the hospital also can be provided. Contact our BirthPlace Office for details.
This class helps prepare expectant parents for a scheduled C-section, explaining the delivery procedure, comfort measures, postpartum stay and related issues.
Expectant parents are encouraged to take this class during their last trimester of pregnancy.
Infant CPR and Baby Safety
One Friday each month, 6:00 pm to 8:45 pm or one Saturday each month, 9:00 am to 11:45 am
This class teaches basic life-support, infant cardiopulmonary resuscitation and the Heimlich maneuver for obstructed airway. Other topics include car-seat safety, poison prevention and baby-proofing your home.
Please register for this class at least three months before your due date. The class also can be taken after your child’s birth. Parents of babies in our NICU are offered this class at no charge and encouraged to register as soon as possible.
Baby Care Class
One Saturday each month: 9:00 am to 1:00 pm or 2:00 pm to 6:00 pm
Good baby care begins with your love and concern. Beyond that, however, you need some technical training and hands-on experience. Our class will teach you everything from holding your baby to care of the umbilical cord and circumcision. The importance of sleep, exercise, fresh air and sunlight to your baby's growth and development are discussed, as are topics such as diapering, bathing, feeding and dressing your baby. The class also examines the messages of crying.
Other topics include weight gain, teething, immunizations, preventive health care and preparation of a layette. The class also covers baby-proofing your home, child passenger safety and the importance of cuddling and touching.
This class is ideal for expectant mothers and partners, caregivers and older siblings. We recommend taking this class during your second or third trimester.
We are pleased to add "Your NICU Baby" to our educational programming from The Newborn Channel. More than 20 programs are available in English and Spanish, and also available online after discharge. See www.yournicubabynow.com for more information.
To register for all classes, please see our schedule of classes and register online. Prices listed may change. Please note that rates are higher if delivering at another facility.
Our BirthPlace staff also can provide referrals to other prenatal, parenting or pregnancy exercise classes offered in the community.
There is a $5 administrative fee per class cancellation. Refunds are based on the guidelines below. It takes up to four to six weeks to process refunds. Thank you in advance for your understanding.
New mothers and their babies gather weekly at The BirthPlace for education, observation and discussion. These gatherings provide mothers with opportunities to ask questions and discuss concerns about baby care, feeding, sleeping, normal growth and development. Gatherings also provide a setting to observe differences in babies and parenting styles. Mothers can share the impact of parenting on their personal lives, careers and relationships, and are encouraged to form a mutual support network once the gatherings have ended.
Join our FREE support group for new moms who delivered at UCLA Santa Monica or Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center. Hosted by a lactation consultant, the gatherings will provide a forum for new moms to network, share insights and discuss breastfeeding and other parenting topics. Please note that this is NOT a breastfeeding-technique clinic. Referrals available for specific needs. No registration needed.