HEALTHY BABIES, HEALTHY BUSINESS®

Financial Impact on Business

Nearly half a million babies will be born too soon in our country this year. The emotional impact of premature birth on families is high — and the cost to businesses is astronomical. Childbirth and newborn care are a big part of employers’ health insurance costs, representing the most expensive conditions billed to commercial insurers for hospital care1and accounting for 7 of the top 10 individual hospital procedures billed.2 With 1.7 million women in the workforce having a baby each year, there is much that you can do to help moms and moms-to-be — and to increase your profitability. The March of Dimes offers a no-cost, multidimensional worksite wellness program, Healthy Babies Healthy Business®, that is tailored to the needs of your company, provides health information for employees, and promotes a pregnancy - and family-friendly work environment.

Prematurity – Did You Know?

  • Affects 1 in 9 babies born in our country

  • Can lead to long-term health problems andlifelong disabilities

  • Is the leading cause of death during the firstmonth of life

  • Causes developmental delays, cerebral palsy,blindness and intellectual disabilities A major impact on business

  • Affects almost 11 percent of babies coveredby employer health plans

  • Places a multibillion-dollar burden onbusiness, with employers billed more than$12 billion annually in excess health care costs

  • Costs individual companies thousands of dollars in absenteeism and lost productivity

Cost to Employers

For a large employer health plan:

  • Employers pay 12 times as much in healthcare costs for premature/low birthweight (LBW) babies as for babies born without complications.

  • Each premature/LBW baby costs employers an additional $49,760 in newborn health care costs. When maternal costs are added, employers and their employees pay $58,917 more when a baby is born premature.

  • With 1 in 9 babies born prematurely, employers spend more on that one premature baby than on the remaining eight babies combined.

* Source: Employer expenditures and healthcare utilization figures from Truven Health Analytics, Inc. Costs of Preterm Birth. Prepared for March of Dimes, 2013.
References:
1. Wier, L.M. (Thomson Reuters), and Andrews, R.M. (AHRQ). The National Hospital Bill: The Most Expensive Conditions by Payer, 2008. HCUP Statistical Brief #107.
March 2011. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. http://www.hcup-us.ahrq.gov/reports/statbriefs/sb107.pdf.
2. HCUPnet. Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project (HCUP). 2011. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. http://hcupnet.ahrq.gov/
Accessed September 12, 2013.