The COVID-19 pandemic only exacerbated the many challenges working parents and their families face every day. Parents struggle with a lack of support, decreased access to care, and blurred lines between home and work, all of which continue to drive increased rates of burnout. Additionally, these members still need help starting and raising their families, but the benefits offered by their employers often fall short. Because employers and health plans often don’t offer the care members need throughout their family journey, employees are leaving jobs and health outcomes are worsening.
Maven Clinic’s new report, The State of Family Health Benefits, examines this disconnect between benefits offered and the care members actually need. We surveyed 300+ HR benefits decision-makers, as well as over 1,000 full-time employees who are starting or raising families, on the family benefits offered by their companies. Here’s what we found.
3 key takeaways from Maven’s State of Family Health Benefits report
Members don’t get the family benefits they need through their employer
Employers surveyed feel confident their benefits meet the full needs of members who are starting and raising their families: 72% rate their family benefits as comprehensive or all-inclusive. In addition, 84% say their family-building benefits support employees well or extremely well. But members disagree: 60% of employees have left or considered leaving a job because of inadequate family benefits. What’s more, only 29% of employers cover fertility benefits and 27% cover preconception care, leaving large gaps in care for those starting families.
Health plans can step in to solve this disconnect between employers and their employees by offering comprehensive family benefits—benefits that provide seamless care from preconception through parenthood—to employer plan sponsors and their employees. Employers benefit from the higher rates of retention that better, more expansive family benefits offer, and health plans and employees benefit from increased access to care and improved outcomes for parents and their families.
Members want help throughout the entire family journey
What does comprehensive family benefits actually mean? It’s about providing continuous care throughout all aspects of starting and raising a family. While most benefits focus on the most visible areas of starting a family—getting pregnant, having a baby, and returning to work—the reality is that members may need the most support outside of these milestones.
In the report, members called out five specific areas where they wanted more support on their family journey:
- Adoption or surrogacy
- Preconception and family planning care
- Caregiver leave
- Virtual family care
Because traditional healthcare benefits focus primarily on OB-GYN care during pregnancy and pediatric care after birth, members feel unsupported during other parts of the family journey. They may need help from a mental health professional to deal with anxiety stemming from fertility treatments, from a nutritionist to help manage gestational diabetes, or from a lactation consultant if their infant struggles to latch during breastfeeding. Comprehensive family benefits ensure that members have seamless care through all major milestones—and all the moments in between. Health plans can offer additional virtual benefits beyond the doctor’s office to provide better care for members during all moments of starting and raising a family.
Employers want improved member retention
Members want more comprehensive care, from preconception through parenthood, and employers look to specific metrics to help them determine the success of their family benefits. According to the report, employers ranked employee retention and attraction as the primary factor in measuring benefits success, followed by business return on investment.
Employers’ focus on retention is justified because over half of employees saying they’d leave their jobs because of inadequate family benefits. There’s a clear opportunity for health plans to provide value to employers by giving members the family benefits they need. Not only will comprehensive family benefits drive employee loyalty for employers, but they also increase members’ access to care, improving outcomes across the family journey. This access is especially valuable for Black and Latine employees, who face significantly higher maternal mortality and morbidity rates than their white peers.
Improving family health benefits with Maven Clinic
From preconception to parenthood, employees need more help than what they’re getting through the traditional approach to family benefits alone. Health plans are strategically positioned to drive value for employers and members by offering a comprehensive benefits ecosystem that spans the entire family journey. With an integrated solution, employees receive the care and education they need in their path to and through parenthood, so they can thrive at home and work.
Maven Clinic is the clinically-sound, comprehensive digital family health benefit for leaders seeking to provide more inclusive, cost-effective care for starting and raising a family. By offering members access to expert, culturally-competent care for every path through parenthood, Maven drives outcomes and lowers costs for health plans, employers, and their employees.
To learn more, download the full State of Family Health Benefits report, or schedule a demo with Maven today.
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