"Each man, woman, and couple should be encouraged to have a reproductive life plan."
-Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Pre-pregnancy health: Becoming a Parent
- What You Can Do

Start the conversation

  • Preconception health is all about teachable moments during routine primary health visits. Ask your patients if they envision parenthood as a part of their future.

Promote Wellness and Healthy Choices throughout the Lifespan
Incorporate the three components of preconception health into existing models of care:

Health Promotion
Give patients information and counseling about:

  • Contraception
  • Immunizations (hepatitis B, rubella, varicella, Tdap, HPV, and influenza)
  • Smoking cessation
  • Alcohol and other drug use
  • Nutrition and weight management
  • Home and workplace hazards
  • Social and emotional support
  • Financial resources and access to care
  • Additional education to promote healthy pregnancy

Risk Assessment

  • Complete health history, including family, medical (including medication use and chronic conditions), reproductive, and psychosocial (major psychological stressors and screening for depression/anxiety and domestic violence) components.
  • Physical examination and selected laboratory tests. The health history reflects a broad definition of health and includes


  • Folic acid/vitamin therapy.
  • Alternative medication regimens.
  • Contraceptive or infertility treatment.
  • Identification of the best medications to minimize fetal risk.
  • Referrals to others for specialty care, such as genetic testing.

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