This study examined a method for incorporating the philosophy of pharmaceutical care into the care of postpartum women to promote patient independence and satisfaction with hospital care. Patients became active participants in their own care through a bedside medication, self-administration program. Results of a patient survey indicated that 146 of 167 patients responded positively to the benefits of the bedside medication program. A self administered medication program for postpartum women allowed for patient controlled analgesic and laxative use. The availability of medications before symptom onset, and the provision of pertinent information on use of medications, allowed patients the independence to make appropriate decisions for their own care.