Abundant Life MIDWIFE
Depending on your place of birth and its placenta release policies you should consider talking to your care provider about taking your placenta home after the birth.
If you are birthing in a hospital, many of them have a general policy of holding the placenta for 72 hours and unless a release form is signed and discussed, they will discard of the placenta without notifying you. You will need to make special arrangements with the hospital staff to either release it right away, or have it immediately frozen rather than refrigerated if they insist on keeping it for longer than 72 hours. If you are birthing in a hospital, they will have a container for your placenta - usually a large plastic bowl with a secure lid surrounded by one or two biohazard bags. If you are picking up your placenta, you should have a portable cooler to take it home in upon pick up.
Birth Center & Home Birth
If you are birthing at home or in a birth center, your midwives will honor your request to keep your placenta and will usually double bag it for you in gallon sized plastic zipper bags or whatever container you would rather provide. If you birthed at home you can simply keep your double bagged placenta in the refrigerator. If delivering at a birth center you should have a portable cooler to take it home in. You will also want to pre-designate someone (partner, doula, friend or other family member) to take your placenta home for you.
Transport of the Placenta
The ideal timeframe to begin the encapsulation process is in the first 24-48 hours postpartum. Once you have had your baby, you or a designated person must contact your encapsulator to inform them of the need for pick up. Your encapsulator will be "on call" for you, so advance notice is appreciated. The placenta must be refrigerated if given to your encapsulator within 48 hours of delivery, or frozen if the transfer time exceeds that. It is best to transport the placenta in a cooler with ice packs in order to maintain freshness.
Return of Pills
Upon receiving the placenta, encapsulation return may be 24-72 hours after delivery. You can expect a phone call arranging pick up or drop off of the finished product(s).