Home pregnancy test kits can be purchased from chemists and most supermarkets, and range in price from $5-$10. It is safe to do a pregnancy test at any time, but results will be most accurate if you wait until your period is due, or 2-3 weeks after possible conception.
If the test indicates that you may be pregnant, or if you have any concern about the result of the test, you should see a doctor, who will conduct a urine or blood test to confirm whether or not you are pregnant, and inform you about your options. You may also choose to see a doctor, and skip the home pregnancy test altogether.
Some people prefer to contact a Women’s Health Centre or Family Planning clinic for pregnancy decision-making counselling with an appropriately qualified practitioner.
The Emergency Contraceptive Pill can be obtained from a chemist without a prescription. It can prevent pregnancy if taken within 3 days of unprotected sex. It is most effective when taken within 24hrs of unprotected sex. For more information:
For information about the emergency contraceptive pill in Chinese: https://www.fpnsw.org.au/chinese
If you are pregnant and don’t want to continue the pregnancy, see the article on Abortion.
If you have any complications with your labour, where you require an obstetrician or want pain relief (gas, epidural), birth centres may not be suitable for you. If you are already at the hospital birthing centre and you experience complications, you may be transferred to the labour ward. A few public hospitals offer Medicare-funded homebirth for low-risk pregnancies, though places are very limited.
For more information on private and public hospitals, birthing centres and home births, visit the Pregnancy Birth & Beyond website: https://www.pregnancy.com.au/
It is normal to experience a range of emotions. It is okay to feel confused, especially if it was not expected and/or is your first time. Family Planning NSW have a useful online resource to assist you to understand pregnancy and support for your partner:
You can also contact the FPNSW Talkline on 1300 658 886.
Australian residents and others who are eligible for Medicare will have their pregnancy and birthing costs covered or mostly covered if they choose to use public hospitals and services. If you are an international student, you will need to check whether your OSHC covers pregnancy. If it does not, giving birth in Australia will be very expensive.
There are many issues that can come up during a pregnancy. It can be surprising how small details can even surface during labour and impact on you – so do as much planning as you can before labour. Don’t be afraid to ask your doctor or nurse for information to be broken into small amounts, so that you can have time to think. Ideally you should be able to trust yourself and your own knowledge of yourself. A common decision to make beforehand is whether or not to use pain relief. Some people choose to have a completely chemical free delivery, with no needles, but many choose pain-relieving medication during labour. Your decision is your right.