Pre-natal Care in Denmark

Information about antenatal care and check-ups for pregnant women in Denmark...

Antenatal classes provide an opportunity for parents to learn about what happens to the body during pregnancy, the development of the baby, and how to do breathing and physical exercises to make giving birth easier and less painful. Information about these courses is available from midwives.

In Denmark midwives are government employees and participate in a schedule of routine prenatal care which also includes visits to a doctor (GP). A minimum of nine check- ups is officially recommended for all pregnant women.

The first check- up is carried out by the GP at the ninth week of pregnancy. The doctor creates a health booklet that contains all relevant medical information about the mother and baby, as well as another booklet for communication with the midwife and health visitor.

Information, taking of samples and counselling related to prenatal examinations are all provided free of charge to pregnant women. Women in Denmark are offered two ultrasound scans free of charge. An ultrasound scan can be carried out by a nurse, doctor or a midwife between the 11th and 14th week of pregnancy. A second scan is provided between 18 and 20 weeks of pregnancy. These scans check for Down Syndrome, severe deformities, and severe congenital diseases.

Most of the consultations before the birth take place with a midwife - individually or in groups. After the baby is born, a health visitor (sundhedsplejersken) takes over.