PEI Reproductive Care Program

The Reproductive Care Program provides information to support fetal, maternal, newborn, and family health during the prenatal and postnatal periods. The program is also responsible for the provincial perinatal database.

What should I know before I get pregnant to ensure a healthy pregnancy for me and my baby?

  • Folic acid: If you are thinking about becoming pregnant or if you could become pregnant, you need to take a multivitamin with folic acid [PDF | 1, 153 KB] every day to help prevent birth defects of your baby's brain and spinal cord.
  • Immunization: If you are planning to have a baby, contact Public Health Nursing to ensure your immunizations are up-to-date before you get pregnant. Some vaccine preventable diseases such as Varicella (Chicken pox) can be harmful to your developing baby. Ask if you are due for a Pertussis (Whooping Cough) immunization [PDF | 379 KB].
  • Smoking: When you or the people around you smoke, your baby smokes too. A smoke-free environment is best for both you and your developing baby. Learn more. Talk to your health care provider or public health nurse if you would like to get help to stop smoking before you become pregnant.
  •  Alcohol Use: Alcohol and pregnancy don't mix [PDF | 484 KB]. Important Fact: There is no safe amount or safe time to drink alcohol during pregnancy or when planning to be pregnant. Learn more. Talk to your health care provider or public health nurse if you would like to get help to stop drinking (alcohol) before you become pregnant. 
  • Rh factor:  Your blood is one of four major types: A, B, AB, or O. Blood types are determined by the types of antigens on the blood cells. Antigens are proteins on the surface of blood cells that can cause a response from the immune system. The Rh factor is a type of protein on the surface of red blood cells. Most people who have the Rh factor are Rh positive. Those who do not have the Rh factor are Rh negative. When an Rh negative woman is pregnant, her baby maybe Rh positive. This means the baby’s father has passed on the Rh positive factor to the baby. Learn more about the Rh factor.
  • Having a healthy pregnancy: The Sensible Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy [PDF | 1.9 MB] provides helpful information for a healthy pregnancy. It also contains a ten-month pregnancy calendar that you can personalize to help keep track of what week of pregnancy you are in.
  • Prenatal nutrition: Your nutritional and overall health before and during pregnancy can influence the health of your developing baby. Eating well, combined with taking a daily multivitamin can give you nutrients needed to feel good, have energy, and support a healthy pregnancy. Learn more about prenatal nutrition.

I’m pregnant, what prenatal information should I know about?

  • Prenatal classes: Public Health Nursing provides prenatal assessments and prenatal classes that  offer helpful information for:
    • experiencing a healthy pregnancy, birth and recovery;
    • feeding and caring for your baby (breastfeeding, nutrition and infant care);
    • learning about your child’s stages of growth and development;
    • understanding infant immunization; and,
    • keeping your family safe and healthy.

      Call Public Health Nursing early in your pregnancy to register for prenatal classes. There is no cost to participate. You will also receive a guided tour of the labour and delivery area of the hospital. View the Healthy Mother ... Healthy Baby [PDF | 215 KB], prenatal information for you and your baby.
  • Blood tests: Learn about blood tests [PDF | 369 KB] done to detect infections and other conditions during pregnancy. 
  • Alcohol and pregnancy: Alcohol and pregnancy don't mix [PDF | 484 KB]. Important Fact: There is no safe amount or safe time to drink alcohol during pregnancy or when planning to be pregnant. If you drink while pregnant, alcohol can cause birth defects and brain damage to your developing baby. Learn more. Talk to your health care provider or public health nurse if you would like to get help to stop drinking (alcohol) when you are pregnant. 
  • Immunization: Pertussis (Whooping Cough) [PDF | 379 KB] can be life threatening for babies and young children. Anyone who will be in close contact with you or your baby should be immunized for Pertussis (Whooping Cough). This is a free, safe, and effective vaccine and is appropriate for parents, brothers and/or sisters of the baby, grandparents, and any potential caregiver. For the best protection have these special people in your life call their local Public Health Nursing office to see if they are due for a booster immunization and to make an appointment to have this done before your baby is born.
  •  Abuse during pregnancy: Pregnancy is a time of change. Pregnancy brings about many changes in a relationship. It is important for a woman and her baby to have supportive, caring relationships. Learn more about keeping yourself and your baby safe [PDF | 230 KB].
  • Preterm labour: Know the warning signs of preterm labour [PDF | 54 KB].
  • Miscarriage: A miscarriage is the loss of pregnancy [PDF | 70 KB]  from natural causes before the 20th week of pregnancy. 
  • Feeding Your Baby: Plan wisely for your baby. You want your baby to get the nutrition they need to grow up strong and healthy. Today, most women breastfeed their babies. Breastfeeding is important and gives your baby just the right amount of protein, carbohydrates, fat, vitamins, and minerals. It provides antibodies and other immune factors that help protect your baby against infections and disease. Learn more:
  • Support for the loss of a baby: If you have experienced the loss of an infant through miscarriage, stillbirth or another complication, the following organizations can provide you with support: 
    • Support Catholic Family Services:  902-894-3515
    • Family Service PEI:  902-892-2441
    • Broken Hearts-Shattered Dreams:  902-675-4047
    • ​Stillborn and Neonatal Self-Help Group:  902-892-0018

I’m a new mom caring for my baby, what should I know?

What is the PEI Perinatal Database?

Data about care and outcomes for pregnant women and newborns is collected from medical records of Queen Elizabeth Hospital and Prince County Hospital. Information is used to assess and improve maternal and newborn care, education and support on PEI.

Information includes maternal health indicators:

  • demographics (age);
  • lifestyle behaviours (alcohol, drug and tobacco use, body weight and BMI, and number of pregnancies);
  • prenatal status and interventions (labour and type of birth (induction, caesarean, breech, etc.), diabetes or hypertension);
  • intra-partum and postnatal status and interventions (length of stay in hospital and complications);
  • births (birth weights, nutrition/feeding-breastfeeding, premature, multiple and stillbirths, congenital anomalies, birth defects and malformations); 
  • newborn readmissions; and
  • perinatal morbidity and mortality statistics.

All data deposited in the database is secure and confidential. Rigorous data quality checks are applied to ensure a high level of data integrity and consistency.

How can I contact the Reproductive Care Program?

Reproductive Care Program
Health PEI
161 St. Peters Road
Charlottetown, PE   C1A 7N8

Telephone: (902) 368-4952


Published date: 
October 19, 2018
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General Inquiries

Health PEI
16 Garfield Street
PO Box 2000
Charlottetown, PE   C1A 7N8

Phone: 902-368-6130
Fax: 902-368-6136

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If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 9-1-1 or go to the nearest emergency department.

If you are unsure what to do about a health issue or if you need health information, call 8-1-1.

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