Lactation benefits for employees are often underutilized, overlooked, and forgotten.
By focusing on this coverage, employers can help change their work environment to benefit new parents and create a better culture of health, family, and productivity.
Studies show that nearly 83% of millennials would change jobs for better family benefits. By offering better benefits, you are more likely to attract a higher caliber of workers and have a more welcoming work environment.
What is Lactation Healthcare?
Lactation healthcare covers a variety of resources and tools to help new parents with their breastfeeding goals. This healthcare covers consultations with International Board Certified Lactation Consultants (IBCLCs) and helps pay for breast pumps. This reimbursement and education program aids working parents in their pursuit of making the best choices for their family, especially as they return to work and are unable to have their baby with them throughout the day.
How Can Companies Best Support New Parents?
There are various ways businesses can help support new parents, especially if they are pursuing breastfeeding. In addition to offering paid maternity leave, companies can work hand in hand with programs like The Lactation Network’s (TLN) Newborn Families Program. This program seamlessly integrates with existing benefits and covers lactation care through self-insured health plans. TLN’s Newborn Families program offers detailed care plans customized to each family, choice of in-person or telehealth consultations, education targeted to working parents’ unique needs and much more.
Additional changes companies can make that lead to better health outcomes are offering paid breaks for breastfeeding, private rooms to either breastfeed or pump, and creating more flexible hours to facilitate unique breastfeeding schedules.
Another consideration could be a hybrid work schedule that allows employees to work more from home.
How Does Lactation Care Benefit the Business’s Bottom Line?
By creating better employee lactation support, companies can positively impact their bottom line. On average, parents miss work more than twice as often when their babies aren’t breastfed, they don’t have maternity leave, or they don’t have lactation rights in the workplace. The Lactation Network’s (TLN) lactation programs boost post-maternity leave retention from 59% to 92%.
Not only are retention rates positively impacted, but healthcare costs are significantly reduced. Breastfed infants tend to have fewer doctor’s visits, hospitalizations, and medicinal needs, averaging healthcare costs that are three times lower overall for infants. These reduced costs also lead to a reduction in employer-subsidized insurance plans.
This decrease in medical intervention and sickness also means that your employees can spend more time focused on work, as the stress of home life won’t be as abundant, and the time taken off to care for a sick child will be diminished.
By encouraging and providing lactation support in the office, employers will be able to foster a climate of care and aid their employees, and their families, in leading healthier lives.
When employees and their families are satisfied with family benefits, you breed a culture of trust, appreciation, and loyalty into your workers. This loyalty will continue to benefit your business. When you care for your employees, they tend to make a greater effort in their work life. This effort leads to more positive margins and productivity.
Focused care on not just the employee but the well-being of the family fosters a strong community culture in the workplace. This community culture benefits businesses as they strive to meet goals together, working in better unity.
This unity also increases the quality of work, as individuals encourage one another and celebrate many different successes. When employers put not only their customers first but also their employees, they can’t help but to succeed.