Pregnant at work: time for prenatal care providers to act

    loading  Checking for direct PDF access through Ovid

Abstract

Fifty years ago, when a woman became pregnant, she was expected to stop working. Today, however, most women who work are the primary, sole, or co-breadwinner for their families, and their earnings during pregnancy are often essential to their families’ economic well-being. Medical data about working during pregnancy are sparse but generally show that both low-risk and high-risk women can tolerate work-related duties well, although some work accommodations (eg, providing a chair for sitting, allowing snacks, or modifying the work schedule) may be necessary. However, some employers refuse to accommodate pregnant women who need adjustments. This can result in a woman being forced to make the choice between working without accommodations and losing her income and health insurance or even her job. Prenatal care providers can play an important role by implementing changes in their own practice, shaping public policy, and conducting research to increase protections for pregnant women and to ensure that they receive medically recommended accommodations while continuing to earn income for their growing families.

Related Topics

    loading  Loading Related Articles