Through your company’s fully-insured health plan or your own self-funded health plan, you offer your employees access to doctors, nurses, dentists — the list goes on. By providing these benefits, you’re helping your employees stay healthy, recover from illness, and prevent disease. Specifically for maternity benefits, you’re helping your employees conceive naturally, have healthy pregnancies, and deliver full-term, healthy babies. Although your benefits give your employees access to vital services for their health and well-being, your job shouldn’t quite be done there. What else should you do?
Help your employees choose quality care providers.
Why should you help your employees find quality care providers?
While you definitely care about the health and wellbeing of your employees, there is also a very serious business case to be made for finding quality care providers: they provide better outcomes. These outcomes in the long run can save you money, both in medical expenses and employee productivity. For example, one of your pregnant employees could select an OB-GYN with poor quality care ratings, unbeknownst to her. This practitioner could fail to check your employee for a short cervix, consequently fail to prescribe her progesterone, and thus contribute to factors of pre-term birth. Your employee and her baby would suffer the medical and emotional costs of this outcome, and you would suffer the associated medical costs and lost productivity.
What can you do to help your employees find quality care providers?
Provide information to your employees about what they should look for when searching for a doctor. What exactly is a “quality care provider”? For pregnant women, key measures of provider quality are: a low-primary C-section birth rate, high prenatal care satisfaction, a high VBAC rate, and low maternal/child morbidity and mortality rate. Empower your employees with the knowledge they need to make smart medical decisions. Invest in a maternity management program such as Ovia Health, which delivers pregnancy-related information to your employees right on their mobile devices. When an employee is 22 weeks pregnant, Ovia Health will send her a reminder to ask her OB-GYN at her 22-week doctor’s appointment to measure her cervix. By providing the quality care metrics to your employees, you’re teaching them what they should look for. By investing in a robust and effective maternity management program such as Ovia Health, you’re empowering employees to take their pregnancies and healthcare into their own hands.
What else can you do?
Don’t do it alone! Enlist various services that are designed to help your employees make the best medical decisions. Companies like Grand Rounds provide second opinions for your employees. If the first OB-GYN your employee meets doesn’t feel quite right, offer her an easy option to get a second opinion. Offer a price transparency tool like Healthcare Bluebook to your employees, helping them figure out what it is they (and you!) are actually paying for. Did you know prices for healthcare procedures vary by 500% or more — even within the same network? Crack down on that variance and help your employees find the quality care providers they feel comfortable with, personally, medically, and financially.
It’s not enough that your employees go to their doctor when they’re pregnant or sick. You should be empowering your employees with the knowledge and tools to take their healthcare into their own hands. By providing this, both you and your employees will immensely benefit.
Learn more about how to empower your employees to take charge of their healthcare.