Wednesday, September 8, 2010

no maternity leave...clarification

I mentioned yesterday that I don't get a maternity leave at my hospital.
They do offer maternity leave...unpaid...for 6 weeks...for employees that have worked there for 12 consecutive months.  When I have our little one, I will only have worked there for 9 months.  So.  No maternity leave.

What are my options?  Well, I will be saving up EVERY vacation day and sick day (and pray that I don't have to take any sick days in the months leading up to the baby!).  I will, if everything goes according to plan, accumulate close to 15 days of paid time off/sick days.  So - that will just have to do.

3 weeks just seems so short!  I know I will make whatever just makes me sad. 

They do have the option for me to take a personal leave.  A personal leave is obviously unpaid...but what makes it a no-go option for us is that you loose your insurance...OR you pay the full insurance cost per month...which for Tommy and I would be roughly a gazillion dollars (basically a few thousands of dollars that we wouldn't even be able to pay it).  Unreal.  So not only would we have no income, but we would have to pay the full health insurance as the hospital wouldn't cover a portion of it any longer.  The HR lady told me that they basically fire you and then rehire you when you take a personal leave. 

I received a few comments, and a slew of emails about this.  I hope this clarified some of the nitty gritty.  I'll just keep praying about it - and we'll figure it out...right!??

*btw:  I worked on a post last night and tried to upload pictures to it from my computer...and then my hard drive...and then my camera...and the server kept rejecting my pictures!?  WHAT!?  Does anybody know what the heck is going on with my blogger??


  1. I'm sorry but that's bullshit! I can't believe they are able to get away with that. Ugh. I'm sorry.

    Can Tommy at least get paternity leave to stay home with the baby for longer. What about his health insurance could it cover you both? My husband's job doesn't offer health insurance so he's now on mine.

  2. I'm sorry, that is such a crappy situation! I HATE the whole "must accrue time" thing! My dad got DVT right after starting a new job (he is fine now thankfully!) but he had to take so many unpaid days. Life doesn't work like that, why do HR policies?

    Congratulations on your exciting news though! That is wonderful!! I'm sure you'll have some frustating times, but we are always here to hear you vent!

    You have a great ability to focus on what matters and the positive things in life, I'm sure you'll still have an amazing maternity leave.

    I don't know if you read her blog, but Anna Maria Horner wrote the most beautiful post about an unexpected pregnancy recently . . .

  3. Yes, you'll figure it out. The sun will come out. :)

    P.S. Be prepared to fall head-over-heels in love w/ your baby. It's an incredible experience...

  4. I seriously cannot believe they don't offer maternity leave or any better options for you... I feel insulted on your behalf! Um, plus? You're training to be a DOCTOR, right? because you would think that kind of community would understand your health needs at such an important time. Pretty crappy of them!!

    Either way... you guys will make it work. Someday you'll look back and say "holy crap, remember when we did that?" and life will be good.

    About Disability Benefits

    New York State disability benefits insurance provides temporary cash benefits paid to an eligible wage earner when he/she is disabled by an OFF THE JOB illness or injury, and for disabilities arising from pregnancies. Employers with one or more employees are subject to the provisions of the New York State Disability Benefits Law.
    The Disability Benefits Law provides weekly cash benefits to replace, in part, wages lost due to illness or injury that do not arise out of or in the course of employment. Disability benefits include cash payments only. Medical care is the responsibility of the claimant. Medical care is not paid for by the employer or insurance carrier.
    Covered employers are required to provide for payment of disability benefits to all eligible employees. Employers may comply by purchasing an insurance policy or by applying to the chair of the NYS Workers’ Compensation Board for approval as a self-insurer. Receive a quotation for disability benefits insurance from NYSIF.
    For additional employer information, go to the NYS Workers’ Compensation Board web site and view DB-102 – "Information for Employer Regarding Disability Benefits Law" and OC-923 – "Important Information for New York State Employers."
    Direct questions regarding employer compliance with the Disability Benefits Law to the Disability Benefits Coverage Section at the following address:
    NYS Workers’ Compensation Board
    Disability Benefits Bureau
    100 Broadway – Menands
    Albany, NY 12241-0005
    Or, you may contact the NYS Workers’ Compensation Board toll free at 1-800-353-3092.
    Failure to comply with workers’ compensation or disability benefits laws constitutes a misdemeanor punishable by a fine or imprisonment, or both. Additionally, the NYS Workers’ Compensation Board may impose penalties in an amount fixed by law against employers who fail to comply with the law.

  6. Hey! So I'm a little late to it, but congratulations! On being pregnant that is. On having no maternity leave, no congrats. That sucks! I wish our system would get it together sooner than later and stop being a dipsh*t

  7. Oh no! That is awful about the maternity leave. I must be living in some bubble because I thought that ALL women were permitted 6 weeks of maternity leave....maybe just in the state of VA. Your post really raises a lot of issues that I have with health insurance companies..I'm so sorry. but things will work out alright. I'm sure of it!

  8. Everyone has pretty much said what I would say.

    I sent you an e-mail full of links to this subject. One of them is a support group for doctors who are mothers.

    Hope we are not overwhelming you with comments, but I think everyone cares. I mainly hope you can get in more sleep time for you and the baby because you are supposed to get more during pregnancy. Can you take naps at work?

    We have to treat new doctors better than this!!! I hate that there are constantly news articles on this subject, but change happens too slowly.

  9. I hate to be the one to point this out (assuming your program director already didn't), but as one resident to another...if your program is under the net of ACGME, there's a maximum number of weeks/days you can miss per year and still progress and graduate. I know the whole no-maternity-leave thing really sucks (one of my greatest fears about residency is getting unexpectedly pregnant during it-I think you're handling this with grace!). I just think it's worse to be blindsided by something like a no-residency-graduation thing.

    Also, other comment people, please don't hate on me for bringing this's how the residency thing works all over; overworked and underpaid.

  10. Sweetie I promise everything will work its way out. Promise.

  11. what? frick! I just ranted about the injustice of it all and then it wouldn't post. grrrr

  12. That's insane and just not cool, not cool at all. I think my mom took a month off too when she had me. I can't even fathom that now. Good luck and sending good vibes it'll work out!

  13. That is so annoying and should be just plain illegal. This is not the place but I have a big rant about that going on in my mind right now.


    1. Mom on both sides can come for a week each (or more if they can) that can give you two weeks that you can go to work but have peace of mind that the little one is okay (or as close to peace of mind that you can get)

    2. Any Aunts, Uncles, Daddy's with baby experience that can lend a hand?

    3. Can you take half days? That way your vacation or sick leave can double. You can work when the cutie pie is typically sleeping. That is were the Family can lend a hand and even take turns coming in the morning or evening for a few hours each.

    4. Good luck sweetie :)

  14. 6 weeks?? Are you kidding? In the UK you get a fairly hefty amount of paid leave for 6 MONTHS, and a lot of people take up to a year, with some level of pay still coming in. My employer assumes you'll take the whole year,unless you tell them otherwise. I can't imagine how difficult it would be to leave your baby at that age - what a horrible choice to have to make.



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