GP Shared Care in Pregnancy – What To Expect

posted in: Health & Fitness, Life | 0

by Dr Saranya Gopikrishna of Hunters Hill Medical Practice


One of the many first steps in your pregnancy is to consider what care pathway you want for your pregnancy. GP Shared care is one such pregnancy care pathway– this is where you see your GP at regular intervals for most of your antenatal visits during your pregnancy. This is especially great for those who have a great relationship with their GP or find that navigating the appointments or commute to their friendly GP may be a bit easier.

First up here is a recap of what is offered for pregnancy care pathways:

Pregnancy Care Pathways

  1. Public Hospital services
    • clinics are run through Ryde Hospital by midwives for only low-risk pregnancies and Royal North Shore Hospital for all pregnancies
    • your birth will be at Royal North Shore Hospital
    • The care pathways could be with midwives and/or doctors depending on your pregnancy
      • Midwifery clinics – you will see different midwives through your pregnancy and birth
      • Midwifery Group Practice – you will see the same Midwife through the entirety of your pregnancy and birth (tip: book early this is very popular!)
      • Doctors clinics – this clinic is for those with higher complexity pregnancies which include chronic medical conditions, complications in pregnancies, diabetes or high blood pressure in pregnancy
  1. GP Shared care
  2. Private Obstetrician

Midwife clinics are mainly for low-risk pregnancies so if you are diagnosed with high blood pressure or diabetes in your pregnancy or have chronic medical conditions you may need to be seen in the Doctors clinic.

Here is the number for Royal North Shore’s Pregnancy Bookings – 02 9463 2378.

GP Shared care

With GP Shared care you see your GP for most of your visits but will need to touch base with the hospital, especially in preparation for your delivery. In general, your visits will get more regular as you progress further along in your pregnancy. The great thing about GP shared care is that at any time throughout the pregnancy you can always pop in for any extra advice or concerns and your GP will already be up to date on your pregnancy journey.

Of course, regardless of the pregnancy care pathway, you choose your GP will always be there to see you at any time during your pregnancy.

Here is the schedule for GP Shared care visits:

Pregnancy week Health care provider Things to do
Up until 10 weeks GP
  • Confirm pregnancy with blood tests and a dating ultrasound scan
  • Discuss options for screening tests for genetic syndromes
  • A referral is made by the GP for shared care to the Royal North Shore Hospital and the triage system there will ensure you are eligible for it – request a hard copy!
11-13 weeks GP
  • Arrange the screening tests to screen for genetic syndromes – this would include the 1) nuchal translucency scan (with blood tests) or the 2) NIPT/Harmony Blood test and scan
  • Influenza vaccination
14 weeks Hospital midwife
  • Review pregnancy details
16 weeks Hospital doctor
  • Review pregnancy details
18-20 weeks GP
  • Organise and review morphology ultrasound
  • Whooping cough (Pertussis) vaccination from 20-32 weeks
  • Routine check – this will include blood pressure, baby heart sound check, measuring the uterine fundal height to ensure baby is tracking well, baby movements)
24 weeks GP
  • Routine check
  • Arrange blood test and gestational diabetes test
28 weeks Hospital Midwife
  • Routine check
31 weeks GP
  • Routine check
34 weeks GP
  • Routine check
36 weeks Hospital Midwife
  • Routine check
  • To collect a vaginal swab to test for a bacteria called GBS – this will need treatment in hospital when you are delivering your baby to prevent your baby getting sick
38 weeks GP
  • Routine check
40 weeks Hospital Midwife
  • We’re getting there aren’t we! Here you will discuss options for an induction of labour
  • Routine check
41 weeks Hospital Midwife
  • Routine check
  • A plan for induction of labour is made
Delivery (of course babies have a schedule of their own. You may go into spontaneous labour at any time in the late third trimester – best to call the birth unit when you do)
6 weeks after delivery GP
  • Mum and baby check – this is a medical check for both mother and baby and reviewing the details of the delivery
  • Your baby will get their 6 weeks vaccinations at this appointment


Pregnancy can sometimes be overwhelming, especially with all the appointments that you are required to go to.  GP shared care is perfect for those who like the comfort of seeing their GP guide them through not only their health but their pregnancy care. It’s a great opportunity for your GP to learn your pregnancy well to help them care for your little bundle of joy once they have been born and continue well into childhood. If you’re interested in this care pathway for your pregnancy just ask your GP if they provide GP Shared care and they can start the initial processes with you.