In order to keep your placenta in the best condition for making medicine, I ask that you put it on ice as soon as possible. For homebirths, place your placenta in a food-grade container and into the refrigerator or freezer within 3 hours after birth.
If you are planning a hospital birth, you should bring a small cooler that you can fill with ice from the hospital. Place the placenta in a food-grade container (ziplock bags will work as well). If you are not able to bring any of these with you to the hospital, request a sterile container (they will usually provide you with a plastic one with a lid or a bio-hazard bag) and put it into the cooler on ice. You may also request your placenta be refrigerated if you were unable to bring a cooler. If the placenta needs to be taken to pathology, request that a small piece be removed for biopsy rather than taking the whole placenta. If they persist in taking the whole placenta; insist that it be kept refrigerated before and after examination, that it be returned to you as quickly as feasible, and that no preservatives are used, particularly formaldehyde. If this solution is used, the placenta is no longer a candidate for encapsulation.
In most cases I am able to collect your placenta within 24 hours of your birth; however, if we have arranged for the placenta to be picked up within 2-3 days after the birth it may be kept in the refrigerator. Please place the placenta in a freezer (double bagged to prevent freezer burn) if it will be 3 days or longer before I receive your placenta.
Let your midwife or doctor know in advance that you would like to keep your placenta. It is not necessary to tell your doctor or the hospital what you are planning to do with your placenta. It is yours to take home, after all, you gave birth to your baby and your placenta. Healthy mothers have the right to take home healthy placentas in both New Jersey and New York.
For my safety, I cannot work with your placenta if it contains any transmittable diseases such as Hepatitis-B, -C or HIV/AIDS.
care of your placenta after birth