Benefits of Prenatal Care and Breastfeeding
The old adage “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”
is particularly relevant to when applied to preventive measures taken during
pregnancy, when a few extra ounces of birth weight can save a child’s
life. During pregnancy, simple precautions can help avoid catastrophic results;
giving up tobacco use, for instance, drastically reduces the risk of miscarriage
and pre-term labor.
The March of Dimes reports that if all women took adequate folic acid before
conception and during pregnancy, the number of babies born with a neural tube
defect could drop by as much as 70 percent. The physical and emotional benefits
of proper prenatal care to a mother and child are underscored by a strong corporation
case for offering prenatal wellness benefits. Nationwide’s Chief Medical
Director, Dr. Michael Moore, estimates costs to care for one baby delivered
prematurely could approach $500,000.
First steps in fostering a prenatal program:
• Invite the March of Dimes to present information about prenatal health
at an staff member brownbag lunch or breakfast meeting.
• Hold prenatal care information classes for interested employees at lunchtime.
• Offer educational materials about the effects of alcohol, drugs and
tobacco use on an unborn child.
• Offer incentives for adopting healthy lifestyles during pregnancy.
• Offer prenatal initiatives and education as part of the corporation
health care package.