maternity leave and disability

Home Forums Women Physicians maternity leave and disability

Viewing 9 posts - 1 through 9 (of 9 total)
  • Author
  • #35827

    I joined my group about a year ago. They were an all male group untill I joined. they have so far loved me, and offered me early partnership. Now I am pregnant. Most are completely OK with it,saying, “We expected this when we hired a young women for this job” but I have also heard some rumors that some of the older, semi retired partners are “uncomfortable” They want specifics as to how long I want to take off and how much I want to work when I come back. This is my first pregnancy and I really don’t know how long I will want to stay home with my baby, or if I will want to work part-time for a while when I do come back. I want to reassure them, and make scheduling easier, but there is so much I don’t know myself. Also, there is the question of disability. Our group has been very generous in the past, covering disability payments untill insurance kicks in. Now they want to completely do away with this benefit(for reasons not related to my own pregnancy). Does anyone have any advice or any resorces to refer me to?


    Re how long you’d be out, I think for you and them you need to make a specific plan, but why not start out longer than you think you need, and if it turns out that you’re ready to come back earlier or more hours, that’s MUCH easier to change than to delay the return. For example, what if you told them you want 4 months completely off and then a 3 day workweek for 4 months and then return to full time at 4 days/wk. Or whatever you are now. Then if you change your mind after 2 months and want to return early, you can let them know and they can start scheduling early. It was very helpful to y patients to know when I was returning and what the arrangements would be in the meantime.

    Re disability, is that how your maternity leave gets covered? If they drop it, perhaps you could negotiate a paid vacation that equals that time and equals what the disability payment would be. Worst case is you don’t get the paid leave but they agree to continue your benefits and whatever percentage of the business you got before. Since I’m in solo practice, I had no maternity coverage. That was painful and was part of why I returned to work at 2 months, albeit part time.

    Please keep us posted — I’d like to hear how you work this out!


    I like psych’s advice to you. I took 12weeks off with each of mine, and would recommend this as a minimum (it wasn’t long enough for me), and I like the idea of considering parttime when you return. It’s great that you’re trying to plan ahead!


    Ditto psych’s advice. I’ve now had 2 babies in the 3 1/2 years I’ve been in practice. I also am self-employed so had no disability coverage. That’s why I only took 2 months off with my first. It was exhausting to go back (full time right away).

    With my second, I took 4 months (despite the giant financial hit – I won’t miss the money 10 years from now, but will probably still appreciate my time off). It was SO much better. I felt like my baby was much better settled, too. We had time to really learn each other. I was also getting an occasional 4 hour stretch of sleep by then :tired:

    Your partners will get over whatever you decide – I promise. The time will pass quickly for everyone.

    Are they going to hire a locums for your position? Saved my relationship with my partners – that’s for sure 😉

    Don’t forget, try to keep your sense of humor, be nice to yourself, and be flexible with your expectations. I had an easy pregnancy the first time, and expected to work right through to labor with the second. Pregnancy #2 was awful – horrible sciatica, fatigue like I’d never experienced, then pre-ecclampsia with an early induction.


    you can buy your own disability policy for 40$/month so that until your ins coversyoutime off/ or whe your runs out/ itwould buy yu a few extra weeks of pay- just delivered an RN lastw eek that did this…


    HA! I just bought an AFLAC policy last week (literally) which would kick into effect March 1sy but would not cover any normal preg for 40 weeks ( starting march 1st) the next Thrusday I found out I was PG…bummer! Keepping the policy though bc it would cover other thigns liek complications and Csection and stuff like that…


    what’s AFLAC?


    That’s the company that came to the office selling policies….180099AFLCA
    If you have an income 125,000-150000 per yr let’s say…you paid 100$ a month, and in case of accident, surgeryeetc. you could get almost your entire paycheck during your time off ( after the first seven days, and lasting for three months)…so it would be particularly good for childbirth ( except as I mentioned I screwed up and did not get it until too late for this preg UNLESS I have complications or Csection etc.)


    Why do we act like pregnancy/childbirth is the only thing that ‘happens’ to affect people’s work lives? My pregnancy and maternity leave are a lot less ‘disruptive’ to my colleagues than the CAD of a male colleague. He’s frequently out with *no* warning, whereas my group knew my maternity leave was coming (though it came earlier than expected) and they could plan around it, for the most part.

    I’m the only person in my specialty at my current hospital, and while most people were delighted when they found out I was pregnant, a few expressed dismay over the lack of meaningful coverage for my consultative services. There wasn’t anyone in the specialty until 18 months ago, and they renigged on a committment to hire some additional ‘man-power’ so I have no sympathy for the complaints. I made no promises not to have more children and also no promises not to get sick, which would have caused a worse deficit in services.

    My advice (as a physician on her 4th maternity leave)–give your best estimate of what you *think* you will want, but give yourself permission to revise that if it isn’t working for you and your family when you give it a good try. I went back to work full time after a 3-month leave with my first. I was miserable, and gave it 3 months. I was still miserable, and negotiated to cut back to 0.75 FTE, I was much happier, and stayed that way until I left that job, over a year after having my second. I thought I was ready to go back to FT work, and took a full time job at a new hospital (with a substantial commute). Found out I was pregnant the day I gave notice to my old job. Was miserable in the new job, and the misery didn’t end after having my 3rd child. Realized after some soul searching that the misery wasn’t *just* due to the FT schedule and commute, though those things were not helping. They were also *acceptable* reasons to give for leaving the job, without making any enemies (easier to say I need a shorter commute than to say ‘my department chair is incompetent at leading a department, though he’s a good clinician’). Negotiated for a part time job without a commute, but it meant starting up a new department, and having no meaningful coverage until I proved to hospital it was worth it to them, and they were ready to follow through. Not sure where this leaves me, now that I’ve had another kid and despite my demonstrating financial viability they are not hiring me an associate.

    Similarly, men and women without children have changes in their career goals and lives and may chose to alter their work schedules as a result. It’s not like everyone is on a path that’s carved in stone except for us ‘women of childbearing age’, who agonize over our ability not to predict the future.

    Hope this helps you re-frame the issue.

Viewing 9 posts - 1 through 9 (of 9 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.