Kate is the Director of Quality at Boston Scientific, a medical device company with more than 36,000 employees globally. She’s also a mother of two, and turned to Maven when she was three months pregnant with her second, Noah, after Boston Scientific launched Maven in the U.S. in January 2020.
Kate talked to us about building trusting relationships with our providers, what “high quality” means in healthcare, and how telehealth support through Maven helped complement her in-person care.
What were you experiencing in your pregnancy when you first joined Maven?
I was initially looking for more information about a VBAC. I live in Bloomington, Indiana, and while we have really great healthcare here, I felt like my OB-GYN wasn’t providing a lot of information about something I was really interested in trying. Also, there are only two OB practices in my community — one other closed right before COVID hit — and I wasn’t even able to get my first appointment until 12 weeks, which was super frustrating. So I decided to give Maven a try.
What was your first impression of the service?
During my introductory appointment with my Care Advocate, I explained that I was looking for second opinions and support related to a VBAC. She shared the resources available — that I could speak with midwives, doulas, nurse practitioners, OB-GYNs. It was clear that Maven had a ton of resources — that’s what really hooked me.
What are some of the ways you ended up using Maven?
I had never talked to a midwife before — I guess I’d thought it was kind of ‘fluffy’ — but I ended up connecting with one who I talked to for three or four months. I even messaged her from the recovery room. It was amazing. She shared information and thoughts I would never have gotten from my OB-GYN. I told her I preferred data, and so she would share white papers and cite the literature to support what she was saying. I felt like she was tailoring her approach to what I needed.
What stood out to you about that relationship?
She took time to ask about my last pregnancy and my delivery to help me understand what I might expect this time around. She would come on the video with a skeletal model of the pelvic area to show exactly what happens, to describe what I might feel, exercises I could do, things like raspberry leaf tea I could try. All backed up with data.
I may have gotten to that level of detail if I’d pushed harder on my OB, but I just don’t think they had time or resources. And maybe I could have gotten a midwife locally, but they’re few and far between. I just don’t think it would have happened — not as quickly as going on Maven on a Monday and getting an appointment on a Tuesday or a Monday night. That’s the best part really. The high-quality of the providers and the quick turnaround is extremely important to working parents. I don’t think you can get that in any city.
"The high quality of the providers and the quick turnaround is extremely important to working parents. I don't think you can get that in any city."
You work in healthcare and ‘quality’ is actually in your job title. What does ‘high quality’ mean to you?
When you talk to the Maven providers, they reference ACOG. They would give me objective evidence to back up what they were saying. They would go above and beyond the information offered by my provider, and then they would provide options and different things I could try.
A lot of people talk about bedside manner. You get on Maven, and the providers are very open and welcoming. It was very easy to talk to all of them. That was very much what people needed in 2020 — we needed some TLC. I think quality goes beyond the product and the process you are offering; it ties back to the personal interaction. I felt very appreciated and listened to, which is important to mothers.
Are there other ways that Maven was a support for you?
Maven was a huge help during my postpartum recovery — I worked regularly with a lactation consultant and physical therapist. And my husband is an employee at Boston Scientific as well. He used Maven after birth to speak to pediatricians, and there were resources for fathers as well, which helped me immensely. We talked to a sleep coach like four times, which would have cost hundreds of dollars. This is an amazing benefit — it’s the best one we have for working parents.
What do you tell people when they ask you about Maven?
It’s quick, it’s easy to use, there are high quality healthcare providers. It was free for me through my employer. The messaging and response within 24 hours — I always got a response within three or four. I think most moms, they decide something is an emergency and then you call the doctor and they’re like, ‘We have an appointment in 3 weeks.’ So the ease of use, the turnaround times. If I didn’t have Maven in 2020 I probably would have gone insane.
"I think quality goes beyond the product and the process you are offering; it ties back to the personal interaction. I felt very appreciated and listened to, which is important to mothers."
What would you say to someone else just getting started with their pregnancy?
If it’s a colleague — I’d say make sure to take care of yourself first, the work will always be there. Luckily we work for a company that lives its values. And then I’d say, ‘You need to get on Maven and here’s the people you should talk to. Oh, you’re a runner? Talk to this person. Oh, you’re having your second kid? Talk to this pediatrician. Oh and by the way, it’s all expenses paid. You can do multiple appointments a week. You should.’
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