Early Prenatal Care

For referrals and resources, call

Santa Clara County Maternal, Child, and Adolescent Health




 Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is prenatal care?
    Prenatal care is the health care you receive if you become pregnant or are planning a pregnancy. 

  2. When should I see a health care provider for prenatal care?
    You should see a health care provider right away if you think you are pregnant-- ideally within the first twelve weeks of your pregnancy. If you are planning a pregnancy getting medical care before you are pregnant can help ensure you and your body are prepared to handle the changes that come with pregnancy.

  3. Why is early prenatal care important?
    Prenatal care is important at every stage of pregnancy. However, seeing a health care provider early on allows you to know your health status, learn about the dos and don’ts of pregnancy, and detect individual health risks that the pregnancy may bring to you and to your developing baby.

  4. What’s the rush?
    Birth defects can be prevented.  The early weeks of pregnancy is a crucial time for your growing baby.  You’ll want to make sure that you are getting the right amount of folic acid (B-Vitamin) to support your baby’s brain and spinal cord development.  Accessing prenatal care later in pregnancy could be too late to prevent birth defects. 

  5. What if I don’t have health insurance or don’t have a doctor?
    There are programs available that offer free or reduced-cost prenatal care.  We can help you find a doctor near you.  Please call 1-800-310-2332 to find out more information. 

  6. Did you know?
    You should take 400 to 800 micrograms of folic acid every day for at least 3 months before getting pregnant to lower your risk of some birth defects of the brain and spine. 

See your health care provider if you’re planning to get pregnant.

Project in collaboration with March of Dimes of California

©2022 County of Santa Clara. All rights reserved.