You’ve called or made an appointment online. You walk into Lifeline aaaand…then what?
If you’ve never been to a pregnancy clinic like Lifeline before, you might feel a little nervous or unsure. Do I need to drink a ton of water and have a full bladder going in? Will I be judged? Should I bring my insurance card? What should I expect at my first Lifeline appointment?
Have no fear, we’ll answer all those questions for you! First, know that help is here for you at Lifeline. We’re here to listen, encourage, and support you. From the moment you step inside, we hope you feel like you’re in a safe place where you can just be yourself, ask all your questions, and let us know how we can best help you. All are welcome regardless of their race, religion, socioeconomic status, or sexual orientation. Everyone needs an extra hand sometimes, and we want to extend ours, free of judgement!
WHERE TO GO
- Lifeline is located at 1515 N New St., Kirksville, MO. If you’re familiar with the Kirksville area, we’re right behind Auto Zone off of Baltimore St./ Business Hwy 63.
- Park in the Client/Expecting Mom/New Mom spots (VIP parking!).
- Enter through the front door and you’ll hear a happy chime and see a friendly face at the front desk ready to check you in. Just let our receptionist know your name and she’ll make sure our nurses know you’ve arrived.
WHEN TO BOOK AN APPOINTMENT
If you are coming for a pregnancy test, we recommend you to wait until the week after your missed period in order to make sure that you don’t get a false negative, as it can take a little while for the pregnancy hormone to be detectable by the tests.
WHAT TO BRING
- All new clients will need to bring a photo ID and a social security card. The photo ID could be a driver’s license or permit, a school ID, a passport, or any other official ID that has your photo and legal name. This just helps us make sure our clinic is safe and secure for everybody. If you don’t have these documents, please give us a call before the appointment so we can find an alternative and ensure that you will be able to receive our care anyway.
- Are you coming for a pregnancy-related service and you have already seen a physician? Bring your proof of pregnancy document with you. If you don’t have it yet, no worries as we can provide it for you after a pregnancy test.
- If you’re coming for a pregnancy test or an ultrasound, arrive with a full bladder. The pregnancy test requires a urine sample from you, and having a full bladder for an ultrasound allows the nurse to get a better picture of the reproductive system. Don’t worry, we’ll let you relieve yourself as soon as possible!
- Feel free to bring your significant other, a friend, or family member. We want you to have the support from loved ones that you need! The nurse will ask to talk with you individually at first just to make sure you have the opportunity to ask any questions or share private information that you wouldn’t want to share with your friends and family. But soon your loved ones will be able to join you to learn more about our programs and about your pregnancy situation and ask any questions they might have. We even offer Dadline, a fatherhood mentorship program designed just for expecting/new dads. If you are pregnant or a new mom and the father of your baby wants to learn more about being a dad, our nurse can give him more information on that program.
WHAT NOT TO BRING
- You won’t need to bring any form of payment, because all of our services are offered at no charge (celebrate good times, come on)!
- Insurance information is not needed for our services.
- Please leave food and drinks at home or in the car so we can keep our clinic clean for everybody.
WHAT TO DO
- Our receptionist will have you fill out some paperwork when you arrive. Nothing super long, just your name, date of birth, date of your last menstrual period (if that applies to the type of appointment you are here for), and other basic info.
- Whenever the nurse is ready, she’ll take you back to one of our comfy client rooms. No stark white walls, no obnoxiously bright lights. Just a cozy room with plush chairs, colorful designs, and plenty of privacy for you to talk one-on-one with a registered nurse who wants to help you. She’ll go through some more questions with you about your pregnancy or potential pregnancy, medical history, and what resources are available to further assist you. Your honest answers will allow her to best help you.
FOR PREGNANCY TESTS
- The nurse will show you the private bathroom, and you’ll go in to provide a urine sample in a cup.
- When you’re finished, the nurse will test your urine for HCG (a pregnancy hormone) with a medical-grade pregnancy test.
- If the test is positive, she’ll discuss your options with you and let you know about all the resources available at our clinic, like our PLANS program. She’ll also refer you to other helpful community resources.
- If the test is negative, the nurse will still be happy to share information about our programs or community referrals if you want to know more. And, whatever the test result, whether you want to shout for joy or need time to process the situation, the nurse will be by your side as long as you want.
- If you’re in the first or second trimester of pregnancy, you might be eligible for an ultrasound at Lifeline.
- Our nurse will take you back to the ultrasound room, and an additional staff person will accompany you and the nurse for extra support.
- The exam will start with an abdominal ultrasound (on your belly), and if you’re early on in your pregnancy you will also need a transvaginal ultrasound. The vaginal probe allows us to get a clearer picture when the pregnancy is just getting started.
- The nurse will use either or both probes to measure the gestational age of the baby (how far along you are), the baby’s heart rate, and to make sure the pregnancy is in the uterus where it’s supposed to be. At Lifeline we don’t diagnose any medical issues or determine the baby’s sex. We’ll refer you to your doctor for those questions.
- After taking some measurements, the nurse will talk you through what’s going on in your body. You’ll be able to see the screen the whole time.
- Photos of the ultrasound and measurements will also be reviewed by our medical director, a board-certified OB/GYN. The physician will review everything and we will let you know what sort of care he recommends. You’ll even get to take copies of those photos home with you!
AFTER THE APPOINTMENT
- If you are interested in receiving more services from us after your initial appointment, we might be able to schedule it right away depending on our availability, and if that is not possible, you will be given the opportunity to make another appointment.
- We might refer you to other agencies for complimentary services depending on your needs.
YOU’RE NOT ALONE.
Hopefully, this info gives you a better picture of what to expect from your first appointment at Lifeline. If you have any other questions, please give us a call or send an email or text. We want you to have all the information you need to feel at ease. If you haven’t scheduled your appointment yet, click right here!
Remember, help is here for you. No judgment. No pressure. Just compassion, information, and resources to help every step of the way.