Beyond Together is a blog series featuring insights from the Collective Health community including industry experts and trusted partners across healthcare and benefits. The ideas shared here are an extension of the conversation started at Collective Health’s annual event, Together with Collective Health, where we discussed navigating the future of workforce health.
Note: The participating partner was a sponsor of Together With Collective Health in 2020 and this content was written by them with permission from Collective Health.
As with so many other parts of work life, COVID-19 has had a huge impact on what your employees need from their fertility and family-forming benefits. Between changes to who has access to fertility care, employee anxiety around going to the doctor’s office, and trying to make plans in a constantly-evolving world, it’s become increasingly challenging to access traditional paths towards building families.
Fortunately, though, there are ways employers can ensure their employees’ needs are met. To make sure you’re offering the right support for your employees pursuing parenthood in the coming months and years, make sure your family-forming benefits have these key components integrated into their offering.
While healthcare clinics have reopened for regular appointments, people are understandably nervous about going back to hospitals or doctor’s offices for care. Fertility and pregnancy care, which often require frequent check-ins with clinicians, are certainly included in that. To put your employees at ease, make sure your fertility offering includes options for employees who want the ability to get care from home.
Carrot, for example, ensures its members have access to a complete fertility and pregnancy telehealth platform, giving them access to OB/GYNs, reproductive endocrinologists, urologists, nutritionists, adoption experts, and more — anytime they have questions. Carrot also taps into the latest innovation, including providing members with exclusive access to the Ava bracelet, an ovulation tracking tool, which gives members another option for pursuing pregnancy when more expensive and invasive treatments like in-vitro fertilization (IVF) are not necessary, not available, or not preferred.
- Mental health
Amid the ongoing effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, a third of Americans now show signs of clinical anxiety or depression. And going through infertility can exacerbate that even further — 50% of women and 15% of men have said that infertility was the most upsetting experience of their lives. And since an important part of mental healthcare is finding the right type of provider with the right expertise, it’s critical that family-forming solutions incorporate mental health into their offering. Having counselors and therapists who understand the unique ups and downs of fertility care and pregnancy can help your employees better navigate their journey to parenthood.
All Carrot members have access to mental health and emotional support experts including family therapists and grief counselors as part of the company’s telehealth platform.
- Cost consciousness
Whether you’re an employer or an employee, healthcare costs have probably been on your mind for quite a while. And with COVID-19’s economic impact, it’s likely that cost consciousness is going to be a priority for the foreseeable future — for benefits leaders, that means stretching benefits budgets as far as possible. Often, fertility and family-forming are perceived as adding to overall costs — however, family-forming benefits can actually lead to cost savings for both employers and their employees, often paying for themselves over time.
By using a clinically-managed fertility benefit, employees receive information about the safest way to approach their treatments to ensure they have a smooth journey. At Carrot, the company has gone one step further by making single embryo transfers (eSET) its protocol of first choice (except in rare cases where it is not medically recommended). This policy leads to more singleton births, fewer preterm births, and, ultimately, lower healthcare costs.
As the world continues to change against the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic, having the right fertility and family-forming benefits can mean fewer financial concerns and general peace-of-mind for both employers and employees.
Carrot, Inc is one of Collective Health’s many trusted partners as part of its ecosystem of over 80+ partners. If you’re interested in understanding how Collective Health can help with the selection and integration of virtual health services, reach out to our team at firstname.lastname@example.org
For more about Carrot’s comprehensive fertility and pregnancy benefits and how they can help your workforce, let them know.