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Alexandra Cohen Hospital for
Women and Newborns

Frequently Asked Questions

For answers to commonly asked questions about the labor and delivery services at NewYork-Presbyterian, visit the Frequently Asked Questions page.

Where is NewYork-Presbyterian Alexandra Cohen Hospital for Women and Newborns located?

The hospital is located on floors 12 to 18 of the NewYork-Presbyterian David H. Koch Center, 1283 York Ave., New York, NY 10065. For maps and directions, visit the Contact page.

If I go into labor, where do I go?

If you go into labor or have a scheduled Cesarean delivery, please report to NewYork-Presbyterian Alexandra Cohen Hospital for Women and Newborns at 1283 York Ave., New York, NY 10065. If you have questions, please contact your obstetrician.

If I think I'm in labor, should I call my obstetrician?

If you believe you are in labor, always contact the office of your obstetrician.

Will there be an Emergency Department at the Hospital?

No. If a patient arrives at the emergency department of NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center requiring obstetrical care, they may be transported by ambulance to the NewYork-Presbyterian Alexandra Cohen Hospital for Women and Newborns for care.

What are the food service options available?

The NewYork-Presbyterian David H. Koch Center has two retail dining locations — the Be Well Bistro and Be Well Express. They are located on the 2nd floor. For more information and to view the weekly menu offerings, click here. In-room food ordering is available through an app.


Common Patient & Visitor Questions

If you have a scheduled Cesarean delivery or will be induced, registration materials will be sent to you electronically before your visit. When you arrive at the hospital, you can fill out the registration forms at one of our convenient kiosks. A patient ambassador will give you and your birth partner a registration wristband. Patients in labor will be registered on the Labor and Delivery Unit.

There is a small waiting area on the 14th floor, as well as a small lounge inside the unit. Families can wait either with the patient or on the second floor Family Lounge or Café.

We have temporarily adjusted our visiting policy in order to keep our patients and visitors safe from infection as related to coronavirus (COVID-19). Please visit our coronavirus visitor policy change for more information.


Common Labor and Delivery Questions

There are three stages of labor:

  • The first stage is the time from the onset of labor until the cervix is 10 centimeters dilated.
  • The second stage is when you push your baby through the birth canal.
  • The third stage is at the end of delivery when the placenta, also called afterbirth, has passed.

We are equipped to handle all types of deliveries, from vaginal single baby birth to high-risk and multiple infant deliveries.

In the delivery room, your nurse will assess your blood pressure, pulse, and temperature, and place you on a fetal monitor. The nurse will monitor you throughout your labor and help you explore which comfort measures work best for you. An intravenous line may be placed to give you medication and fluids. You may also receive ice chips to help quench your thirst. You should not eat any food without your physician's permission.

We have temporarily adjusted our visiting policy in order to keep our patients and visitors safe from infection as related to coronavirus (COVID-19). Please visit our coronavirus visitor policy change for more information.

There are several methods to induce labor, including amniotomy, rupturing the amniotic sac during a vaginal exam, or administering prostaglandin, a hormonein a gel form that is inserted into the vagina or a tablet given by mouth, to prepare the cervix for delivery. Induction is not usually done unless there's a true medical need for it. This is done if your water broke, but you have not had contractions; your baby is several weeks overdue; you have an infection in the uterus; there isn't enough amniotic fluid, among other reasons.

Typically, maternity patients will be hospitalized for up to two days postpartum for vaginal deliveries and three to four days for Cesarean deliveries.

If you have a Cesarean delivery, your birth partner can be with you as long as you receive epidural or spinal anesthesia. If you require general anesthesia, your birth partner will be taken to the recovery room to wait for you and your baby. You will be monitored in the recovery room until the effects of anesthesia wear off. When you are ready, you will be transported to the mother-baby unit.

Pictures may be taken during delivery. Only still photography is allowed in the labor room and birthing/ delivery room for vaginal delivery or operating room for Cesarean delivery. Photographs are permitted behind the anesthesia screen and in the operating room at the discretion of your obstetrician. Videotaping is not permitted in the birthing/delivery or operating rooms, regardless of the type of delivery. Videotaping and still photography of the mother and her baby are permitted in the mother's room on the postpartum unit. Any videotaping or photographing of staff may only be done with that staff member's permission.

After delivery, your obstetrician or anesthesiologist will prescribe pain relief medications for use during your postpartum stay, as appropriate. Your nurse will regularly inquire about your comfort and pain level to assess what medication will help to keep you pain-free. You will be given medication as needed and agreed upon by you and your nurse consistent with your doctor's orders.

Yes. Your baby will need to see a doctor frequently within the first weeks of life, so it will be helpful to choose a pediatrician in advance. If you need help finding a pediatrician, visit nyp.org/find-a-doctor or consult your obstetrician.


Common NICU Questions

The hospital has a 60-bed Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), which provides comprehensive care to extremely premature neonates and newborn infants requiring medical or surgical intervention. The NICU has an MRI machine, bedside imaging, and an operating room located right within the unit. We have several quiet meeting spaces for consultations and family education and have single-bedded NICU rooms for families to bond with their babies.

The Hospital has a level IV NICU, the highest level awarded by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). The AAP differentiates neontatal units by four levels based on the complexity of care the facility can provide.

  • Level I (well newborn nursery): These facilities can resuscitate babies at delivery; evaluate and provide postnatal care to healthy newborns; provide care for infants born at 35 to 37 weeks who are stable; stabilize newborns who are ill and those born less than 35 weeks' gestation until transfer to a higher-level facility.
  • Level II (special care nursery): In addition to the capabilities of a level I facility, these units can care for infants born after 32 weeks and weigh more than 1500 grams; provide care to babies convalescing after intensive care; provide mechanical ventilation for less than 24 hours; stabilize newborns who were born before 32 weeks and weighing less than 1500 grams until transfer to a higher-level facility.
  • Level III (neonatal intensive-care unit): These facilities can provide sustained life support; provide care to infants born before 32 weeks that weigh less than 1500 g; can perform advanced imaging; and has access to a full range of medical specialists, in addition to the capabilities of a level I and II facility.
  • Level IV (regional NICU): The highest level of neonatal care, these facilities can provide the capabilities of level IV, III, II, and I units can perform major surgery for complex congenital or acquired conditions; maintain a full range of pediatric medical subspecialties; can facilitate transport and provide patient/family education.

The NICU is staffed with neonatologists, neonatal nurses and nurse practitioners, respiratory therapists, psychologists, social workers, nutritionists, and pharmacists who have experience caring for critically ill infants.


Common Postpartum Questions

When you go home, you will have steri-strips across your incision. You should make sure you keep the area clean. When you shower, let soapy water drip over the incision. Make sure you don't vigorously scrub the incision. Your doctor may say it's OK to apply a topical antibiotic or petroleum jelly on the incision. You should watch out for redness, swelling, drainage, and separation of the skin around the edges of the incision.

Deciding how long to breastfeed is a personal decision. The World Health Organization recommends exclusively breastfeeding for six months and then continued breastfeeding combined with solid foods for two years.

Postpartum depression is a mood disorder that affects a mother after the birth of a new baby. It's estimated that 20% of women experience mood or anxiety disorders during pregnancy and the postpartum period. Symptoms include:

  • Exhaustion and fatigue
  • Extreme sadness and mood swings
  • Restlessness and irritability
  • Anxiety or panic attacks
  • Appetite changes
  • Oversleeping
  • Thoughts of harming yourself or your baby
  • Persistent thoughts of suicide or death

There are many reasons a woman may develop postpartum depression. If you feel you may be depressed, help is available. Talk to your doctor about connecting you with mental health professionals. You can search for a psychiatrist or psychologist at NewYork-Presbyterian by visiting nyp.org/find-a-doctor. You can get additional information about postpartum depression by visiting nyp.org/psychiatry.

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommends having contact with their health care provider within three weeks of giving birth. You should have a complete postpartum checkup no later than 12 weeks after giving birth.