Take Control of Planned early deliveries

For decades, organizations like the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) and the March of Dimes have been promoting the importance of full-term pregnancies—those naturally reaching at least 39 weeks gestation—yet early elective deliveries still account for 10-15 percent of all deliveries.

Women should understand the risks of having an early elective delivery. Numerous studies show early elective deliveries are associated with increased maternal and neonatal complications for both mothers and newborns, compared to deliveries occurring beyond 39 weeks and women who go into labor on their own.

Stressed out women

Partner with your doctor or caregiver to create a birth plan

Developing a birth plan is a great way to make sure you have considered all your options about pregnancy, labor and delivery. This also allows you to share your expectations and desires with your health care provider.

Use the resources on this page to help develop your birth plan. You can also ask your doctor or caregiver to help you.


Take Control of Your Health, Inducing

Get Active on Social Media

Text for Babies Text 4 Baby is a free text messaging system that gives mom health tips dependent upon her time in pregnancy. The texts continue up until your baby is one year old. Click here to sign up.

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MBGH Logo The MBGH "Preventing Early Elective Deliveries (EED) Project

The Midwest Business Group on Health (MBGH) leads the EED Project as a collaborative to reduce or eliminate early elective deliveries in Illinois. The EED Project has the following components:

  • Educating consumers through TV, the Internet and social media about the risks of non-medically related, early elective deliveries
  • Educating employers on how to help their covered populations improve the maternity care they receive
  • Working with hospitals, physicians, health plans, government entities, media, community groups and employer organizations to educate providers and others about the rate of EEDs, how this can be reduced and how consumers can identify higher quality providers

Funding for this work comes from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the United Health Foundation, with support from the National Business Coalition on Health.
Go Full Term
  • Doctors Redefine the Length of a Full-term Pregnancy
  • Why Scheduling an Early Delivery is Not a Good Idea
  • Don't Rush Your Baby's Birth Day
  • Wait at Least 39 Weeks
  • Healthy Babies are Worth the Wait
  • Baby's Development Video
  • 40 Reasons to Go the Full 40 Weeks
Choosing a Caregiver
  • See How Your Hospital Compares to Others for Early Deliveries
  • Hospital Ratings for C-sections
  • What Should be Included in a Birth Plan
  • Fill Out Your Own Birth Plan
  • Promoting a Healthy Birth Video
  • What You Need to Know About Cesarean
  • What Hospitals Don't Want You to Know About Cesarean
  • Frequently Asked Questions - Cesarean Birth
  • Consider a Vaginal Birth After Cesarean Delivery
  • VBAC vs. C-Section: Which is Right for You?
  • Frequently Asked Questions - Early Elective Delivery
Partnering with your Doctor
  • Choosing Your Prenatal Care Provider
  • Choosing a Caregiver
  • Making the Most of Your Visit
  • 5 Things Physicians and Patients Should Question
  • What Procedures to Reject When You're Expecting
  • What you Need to Know about Induction
  • Preparing Yourself for Labor