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Parenting & Pregnancy

As a Baystate Health team member, you have access to a variety of benefits and resources to help you parent your children, from pregnancy through college.

For a printable copy of the resources on this webpage, see below:

Pregnancy, Breastfeeding and Adoption

Pregnancy, Breastfeeding and Adoption

Congratulations on your growing family! Baystate Health has a host of benefits and resources to support your healthy pregnancy, recovery from childbirth, breastfeeding, bonding and caring for your new child.

Upon Pregnancy

It is important to inform your manager as soon as possible to allow for preparations to be made while you are on your maternity leave. While your due date may still be several months away, you should initiate your maternity leave early in the process. Refer to the Pregnancy Kit for important reminders and resources regarding your pregnancy needs, maternity leave and your return to work. In addition, if at any time during your pregnancy your healthcare provider recommends restrictions, inform your manager immediately, so that you can work together to determine accommodations.

Support for New Moms and Nursing Moms 

Emotional Support - This exciting time of life can also sometimes pose new feelings and challenges to sort through. All employees have access to free, confidential counseling to help navigate the many adjustments that this change can bring. Call WorkLife and EAP Support 24/7 at 800-888-6332. 

Community Support - Education and support for expectant parents and families including childbirth and breastfeeding classes and resources, infant care, keeping baby safe, babysitter academy, grandparents classes, and parent support groups . For more visit baystatehealth.org and search Childbirth and Parent Education.

Lactation Support - Baystate Health supports its team members who are pregnant or lactating as it is our desire to promote healthy pregnancies, recovery from childbirth, breastfeeding and bonding and caring for a new child. As such, we have a host of resources to support you and your family during this special time of your life. Lactation space is provided to allow you to express milk while at work. There are several identified spaces across the organization, however, if you do not see a lactation lounge listed that is near you, work with your manager to find an appropriate space. For more information, review the Pregnancy, Lactation and Breastfeeding Support policy on The Hub>Policies>BH-HR-318  

Lactation Rooms-  Each of the rooms listed below are equipped with a hospital grade electric breast pump and personal kits can be purchased from Lactation Services.

  • BMC- Springfield, S1404B
  • Holyoke- Whitney 2003A
  • 280 Chestnut- 3rd Floor lounge/ladies room    

To access these spaces, call HRAnswers at 413-794-4747.

  • BFMC, Obstetric Unit, equipped with an electric pump. Contact the unit, 413-773-2359.
  • BMLOC - D406A Oncology, 4th fl. Security can unlock: 413-967-4843
  • Noble- 2W, Room 216. Security can unlock: 413-636-1446
  • Wing - 1st floor, between café and OR. Security can unlock: 413-370-5154
        

Adoption Assistance

Receive reimbursement for eligible adoption expenses. For more information, review the policy on The Hub>Policies>BH-HR-300. 

Expectant Parent Newsletter

Each weekly email is customized to your exact week of pregnancy and baby’s age, up to their third birthday. Subscribe online.

Job Protection While on Parental Leave

Employees may be eligible for job protection and/or income replacement under a variety of federal and/or state leave laws. Contact Disability Managements at 413-794-7682 to confirm your eligibility. For more information, visit The Hub>Policies>BH-HR-306.

Hospital Indemnity Insurance

Hospital Confinement Indemnity Insurance is available for purchase during benefits open enrollment. This supplementary medical-based insurance, pays you a daily benefit during your hospital stay for childbirth. The benefit amount is determined based on the type of facility and the number of days you stay. This benefit is not health insurance, however it can help you pay for your medical expenses. A few examples of how you could use this money:

  • Out-of-pocket expenses such as deductibles and copays
  • Travel, food and lodging expenses for family members
  • Child care
  • Everyday expenses like utilities and groceries

There is no pre-existing stipulation on this policy, however it is only available for purchase during benefits open enrollment. Learn more about BenefitsPlus.

Healthcare Coverage for Your Child

In order to have health insurance coverage for your new family member, you need to initiate a “Qualifying Life Event” in Workday within 30 days after the birth or legal adoption of your child. Log into Workday, click the Benefits application from the homepage, and then click Benefits in the Change Column to begin the enrollment process. Make sure to have all applicable documentation to attach (i.e birth certificate). For questions, contact HRAnswers at 413-794-4747.

Care Options for Your Child

Child Care Programs (Limited Basis Reopening Post Pandemic)

Child care programs are beginning to reopen in Massachusetts. However, due to reopening guidelines, access to child care programs continues to be limited. See below for support in finding child care providers/facilities as well as alternative options to consider. Connecticut residents: Many childcare programs have been impacted and as a result of the pandemic have not reopened. To learn more visit the Connecticut Office of Early Childhood for the latest information.

Securing Care Arrangements for Your Child

Get Personalized Assistance from a WorkLife Specialist

Whether you are looking for ongoing child care, back-up care, summer camps, before/after school programs, extracurricular programs, or any other type of child care solution; a specialist from WorkLife and EAP Support can help make it easier by doing the search for you. Your specialist will consider your needs and requirements for care and make phone calls to providers to help you find a match. They will ask questions about cost, availability, hours of operation, and any other specific points that are important to you. Specialists are available at no-cost through your WorkLife and EAP Support program. Call WorkLife and EAP Support at 800-888-6332 and ask to speak with a “WorkLife Parenting Specialist.” Note: If your worklife specialist is not able to find a program for your child the first time you call, you can resubmit your request at a later date, as programs are approved and continue to reopen.

Consider In-Home Care Options (even while you are at home!)

Local and national care agencies can help you find verified babysitters and nannies in your area. Many agencies charge fees for these services, so finding the agency that will best meet your needs is an important step. Most agencies conduct basic background checks on all providers before they can post their availability on the website. However, depending on your need for further validation, you can also read reviews about the providers, ask for references, and even purchase more in-depth background checks, directly through the agency website. If you are working from home and previously had apprehension about hiring an in-home provider, now is a great opportunity to try it out while you are home with your kids. Check out national agencies such as Care.com and Sittercity.com or find more specialized agencies in your area by calling WorkLife and EAP Support at 800-888-6332 and ask to speak with a “WorkLife Parenting Specialist.”

Consider Baystate’s Family & Friend Childcare Share – It Takes a Village

A special group forum has been set up on Baystate’s Workplace site to connect Baystate Health employees who need back-up child care in response to COVID-19 related school and daycare closings. The group is called “It Takes a Village- Employee Child Care Share. This is a forum for you to let others know if you are looking for a babysitter or have one you can recommend!

Resources to Help You Select the Right Care Option for You and Your Family

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Parenting Support

Helping Your Child Cope

There is a lot going on in the world and your children may need your help navigating their thoughts, feelings and emotions. The resources below provide helpful, age-appropriate information to help you talk to your children about the current times.

Helping Kids Manage - Magellan Health

Helping Children Cope After a Traumatic Event - Magellan Health

Talking to Children about Diversity - Magellan Health

Helping Children Cope with a Disaster- Magellan Health

Coping When Cooped Up - Magellan Health

Talking to Children About COVID-19 (Coronavirus): A Parent Resource- NASP

Talking to Kids About the Coronavirus - Child Mind Institute

For Healthcare Worker's: Answering My Child's Questions About Going to Work (adapted from the CDC)

Coping Plans for Families

Is Your Family Stressed? Take the Quiz - Magellan Health

 

Parenting Support for a Variety of Needs

WorkLife Specialists are available and committed to helping parents and their growing families.  Whether you are faced with a specific need for your child or just want to talk through an issue, the Parenting experts through your WorkLife and EAP Support program are available to provide personalized consultations, research and guidance. Some common parenting concerns you may be facing with your child:

  • Device Addiction
  • Improper Eating Habits
  • Anger and Aggression
  • Lying
  • Sibling rivalry
  • Separation anxiety
  • Puberty
  • Coping with difficult times
  • Study/School Habits
  • Bullying
  • Self-esteem/self-image

Call WorkLife and EAP Support at 800-888-6332 and ask to speak with a “WorkLife Parenting Specialist.”

Parenting Children with Special Needs

Parents of children with special needs may experience higher levels of stress because a child with special needs has unique and, at times, demanding needs. A WorkLife Specialist can help by:

  • Finding care provider referrals, educational resources, and support programs.
  • Exploring health and nutrition resources, therapeutic activities, federal and state benefits, and long-term care options.
  • Locating information about IDEA, Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) and Planning and Placement Teams.
  • Researching support and advocacy groups, and summer programs for children with special needs.

Call WorkLife and EAP Support at 800-888-6332 and ask to speak with a “WorkLife Parenting Specialist.”

For more resources materials to support our parents, see banner below for "Resources Based on Child's Age/Stage"   

Your Child's Physical and Emotional Health

Child Therapy through Baystate’s EAP

Just as with adults, there are times when children need the expertise of a psychotherapist. Child therapy was developed to fill this need. Children most often need to seek therapy after a traumatic event, such as the death of a loved one, or during divorce or other family hardship. But there are all sorts of other reasons children could benefit from therapy. If you have a child who is struggling in any way and they are open to speaking with someone, a therapist will be able to tailor the therapy to their unique needs and the issues at hand.

All Baystate Health employees and their dependents/household members, have access to up to 6 sessions per issue, per year with a counselor, at no-cost. Appointments are available in person, via live video and/or phone, and even via text messaging (age 13+). This benefit is available through the WorkLife and EAP Support program. Call Worklife and EAP Support at 800-888-6332 to speak with a clinician who can help get your child scheduled to meet with a therapist.

Health Care FSA

You can start or increase your Health Care FSA contribution to pay for your child’s uncovered, eligible medical expenses. For more information, visit The Hub>Benefits>Flexible Spending Accounts.

The Following Benefits Apply to  Health New England (HNE) Plan Members

Telemedicine through Teladoc™

Teladoc is a telemedicine service that provides around-the-clock access to U.S board certified physician via phone, video/web or mobile app. Common ailments best suited for telemedicine include colds, rash, respiratory infection, ear infections and more. This service can be particularly helpful when your child needs care on during off hours, a weekend, holiday, or away on vacation. Create an account before you need care to expedite your first visit. To get started, log into your account at www.teladoc.com or call 1-800-835-2362 and request an appointment. The cost is the same as your primary care co-pay or your co-insurance portion for those enrolled in the Baystate HSA medical plan.

Add Your Child to Your Health Plan

In order to have health insurance coverage for your new family member, you need to initiate a “Qualifying Life Event” in Workday within 30 days after the birth or legal adoption of your child. Log into Workday, click the Benefits application from the homepage, and then click Benefits in the Change Column to begin the enrollment process. Make sure to have all applicable documentation to attach (i.e birth certificate). For questions, contact HRAnswers at 413-794-4747.

24/7 Access to the HNE Nurse Line

Licensed nurses and clinicians at HNE are available at no cost 24/7 to answer health-related questions and help you determine if your child’s symptoms warrant a call to the doctor or if it can be managed at home. Call the HNE nurse line at 866-389-7613.

Your Family's Finances

Financial Coaching

Whether you’re saving for college or retirement, figuring out how to manage your debt, or dealing with any kind of financial issue, you can consult with a financial coach.
Financial coaching consultants have an average of 22 years of experience in a wide range of financial situations and are ready to give you the advice you need to help you make the best choices on a wide array of financial matter.

The program includes 2 free 30-minute telephone consultations, per issue, per year, and discounted fees if you elect to continue working with a financial coach beyond initial consultations. Call WorkLife and EAP Support for confidential assistance 24/7/365 at 800-888-6332.

Paying for Child Care

State and Federal Programs - Depending on where you live, your income and other factors, you may be eligible for state or federal programs and tax credits that help pay for child care. For an overview of some of these programs, check out Magellan’s Guide for Reducing Child Care Costs .
Dependent Care FSA - Contribute pre-tax dollars to use on day care, day camp, nursery school and other expenses incurred while you are at work. For more information, visit The Hub>Benefits>Flexible Spending Accounts

Estate Planning

Receive 2 free consults with an attorney to help you think through how best to protect your family assets. Call WorkLife and EAP Support at 800-888-6332. In addition, legal plan insurance is available for purchase, providing low cost access to legal services including will preparation and other estate planning, visit The Hub> Baystate Healthy>Financial Wellbeing>Legal Services

Term Life Insurance

Baystate covers 1x the salary of all full time employees and an additional 1x salary in the event of an accidental death. Supplemental buy-up coverage is available during open enrollment. For more information visit, The Hub>Benefits>Life Insurance

Whole Life Insurance

Coverage of one to five times salary, with cash value available to you, your spouse, children, and grandchildren. Medical underwriting is required for some amounts. For more information, visit The Hub>Benefits>BenefitsPlus

529(b) College Savings Plan

A 529 college savings plan is designed to help set aside funds for future college expenses and offers significant tax benefits and an exceptional degree of control and flexibility. Your investments will grow tax-deferred, and withdrawals used for qualified higher education expenses are not subject to federal income tax. For more information, visit The Hub>Benefits>BenefitsPlus

Employee Discount Center

Save on hundreds of products and services, including cell phone lines, laptop computers, hotels, clothing, groceries and more. Your adult household members can create their own online account to access discounts on their own. Visit Baystate.Perkspot.com

Local Community Services

A Worklife Specialist can help you search for free or reduced cost services like food, housing, government benefits, job training for family members, etc. Call WorkLife and EAP Support at 800-888-6332.

Dependent Care FSA

Contribute up to $5,000 per year of pre-tax dollars to a Flexible Spending Account (FSA) to use on expenses incurred while you are at work for things such as day care, day camp or nursery school expenses.  For more information, visit The Hub>Benefits>Flexible Spending Accounts .

Youth Accounts 

Pioneer Valley Credit Union (PVCU) will make the initial $25 deposit for members under the age of 2. These young members get the reward of a free gift each time they make a deposit. For more information and to open a Youth Account contact 413-733-2800. All Baystate Health Employees can become a member of PVCU. To learn more, visit The Hub>Baystate Healthy>Financial Well-being

Your Child’s Education

A Parents (New) Role in Education

We don’t know yet what school will look like in the near term, but we do know is that we need to plan for the possibility of a remote learning schedule for our children. Many parents experienced remote learning for the first time during the 2020 school year. Below are some tips parents have shared to make the experience as successful as possible.

  • Create a designated work station for your child. Make sure it is quiet, free from distractions and has a good internet connection.
  • Maintain a regular routine. Try to keep the same schedule as when your child was physically going to school – wake up, get dressed, eat breakfast, “go to school”, etc…
  • Communicate with the school/teacher.  If you or your child are having any concerns, make sure you speak up and let someone at the school know.
  • Encourage autonomy. Even our youngest learners can benefit from doing things on their own. Teach them how to launch their virtual classroom meetings, set them up with school assignments that they can do alone and build-in check points with them to see how they are doing.
  • Make time for physical activity , exercise and fun! The idea of “school recess” is two –fold: it allows time for a mental break and physical stimulation. Build in “recess” to your child’s day to keep them physically and mentally at their best. Consider recess for yourself too!

 

Online Learning Resources

Children are more accustomed to online learning now than ever before, so it might be a good time to introduce resources to help supplement their school learning. Check with your local library or school district for online learning resources. In addition, many companies are offering free online learning tools right now, see these free resources compiled by the Today show. Search the internet to find a program that best suits your family. Check out these Virtual Field Trips ideas and other Learning Resources for Kids, from our partner LifeCare. You can also call a WorkLife and EAP Support to help you find resources based on your child’s age, interests, etc. Call WorkLife and EAP Support for confidential assistance 24/7/365 at 800-888-6332.

Academic Assistance & College Planning

Worklife Specialists are available to provide advice, information and referrals to support your child’s academic needs. Including information to help them best learn at different stages or locate tutors for hire to help with homework and studies (see our Homework Tips for Parents guide). The service can also help locate schools; public, independent/private – from grade school to college. Extensive information on planning for college – testing, college evaluating, locating scholarships, financing and more! Call WorkLife and EAP Support for confidential assistance 24/7/365 at 800-888-6332.

Extracurricular/Enrichment Programs

Extracurricular programs such as sports leagues, arts and music classes and supplementary courses, and other type programs are a great way to feed your child’s passion for learning and encourage well-rounded perspectives. A specialist from WorkLife and EAP Support can help research and locate programs that interest your child and meet your needs. Call WorkLife and EAP Support for confidential assistance 24/7/365 at 800-888-6332.

529 College Savings Plan

 A 529 college savings plan is a smart way to help meet the rising costs of higher education. 529 college savings plans offer significant tax benefits and an exceptional degree of control and flexibility. What's more, 529 plans can be used for virtually any public or private institution of higher education in the United States and even many abroad.

The Scholars Choice 529 college savings plan can help your family save for college, graduate school, or vocational school. By investing in this Plan, your investments will grow tax-deferred, and withdrawals used for qualified educational expenses are not subject to federal income tax. In addition, you maintain ownership and control how the money is used. 529 plans offer an exceptional array of tax benefits, flexibility, and control.

Highlights:

  • A way to for families to save for college
  • Available to investors nationwide
  • Proceeds can be used for any accredited college
  • An investment account with tax advantages
  • Cost-effective employer-sponsored plan investment options

To learn more about the 529 College Savings plan, visit BenefitsPlus.

Resource Guides By Child's Age/Stage

The following resource guides are provided through our partnership with Magellan Health and LifeCare. These extensive guides hold valuable information based on the age or stage your child is in. Theses resources are printer-friendly and a great tool to have by your side throughout your child's development.