The ideal time for the first baby bath is 2-3 days of life. It is not standard practice to have the baby bathed while in hospital. Baby's are born with vernix which protects them from germs in the environment and provides immunity as it is absorbed into their body. A baby does not need to be bathed every day as this may dry out your baby's skin. Make sure you have all your supplies handy before you begin. It is suggested that you use a plastic baby tub instead of a large family tub. You do not have to worry about the baby's cord becoming wet. Use a small amount of warm water that you have tested with your wrist and mild soap. Always start with washing the face (don't use soap) and hair first. Dry the baby off promptly and keep him/her warm and dry afterwards. Remember to hold the baby's head up during the bath. Never leave a baby alone in a bath or water, even for one second.
Information on the steps involved in bathing a newborn can be found on the Middlesex London Health Unit website.