Know to Ask:
Pregnancy can be an exciting but also an overwhelming time. In order to make the experience easier, it is important to be aware of the recommended medical exams and know what questions to ask your doctor. Some ultrasounds and other tests require you to make an appointment well in advance. Women experiencing a high risk pregnancy will need extra monitoring, and should review the second page of the checklist. In addition, this page includes helpful and important employment rights for pregnant women. Bsha’a tova!
Please note: In cases where increased risk is indicated, these tests may be recommended by your doctor or a clinical geneticist. It is important to clarify with the kupah which tests are covered.
- Informing employer about pregnancy is required from the 5th month of pregnancy.
- An employer is never allowed to fire a woman because of pregnancy.
- After 6 months employment a pregnant woman cannot be fired for any reason without a special permit.
- Paid hours for appointments: Employees working up to 4 hours a day are entitled to be paid up to 20 hours per month and up to 40 hours per month for someone who works more than 4 hours a day.
- From the 5th month and beyond, an employer cannot require a pregnant woman to work overtime. She may provide written agreement and medical permission to work overtime if she chooses.
- From the 5th month and beyond a pregnant woman can not be required to work night shifts provided she informs her employer in writing.The employer must give unpaid leave if the place of work is dangerous to the mother & her pregnancy.
- A woman absent for at least 30 days due to a high-risk pregnancy is entitled to Bed Rest Benefit.
Who is Considered High Risk Pregnancy?
- Women over the age of 35, or under the age of 18.
- Women with chronic illnesses such as diabetes, epilepsy, high blood pressure, heart conditions, etc.
- Pregnancy of multiple babies
- Women with an infection during pregnancy.
- Women with preeclampsia (רעלת הריון) or gestational diabetes (סוכרת הריונית).
- Women who have experienced recurrent miscarriage (3 or more).
- Women who have had previous high risk pregnancies (although this will depend on the cause of the risk in the previous pregnancy).
Monitoring During High Risk Pregnancy:
- Once determined as high risk, your regular OBGYN may refer you to a high risk OBGYN who should monitor you throughout the rest of the pregnancy.
- High Risk OBGYNs have limited appointments, so make your first appointment ASAP.
- Be prepared to have extra doctor’s appointments, monitoring, and ultrasounds.
Supplemental Insurance Package Reimbursements:
- 1,500 NIS reimbursement for a Doula.
- 700 NIS reimbursement for seeing a private specialist.
- 400 NIS reimbursement for extra night of recovery post birth, consultation with lactation consultant, consultation with sleep specialist, and other consultations post birth.
- Equipment such as a breast pump must be purchased at your kupah's pharmacy in order to received reimbursement for the product.
- Reimbursement of 75% up to 2,000 NIS for each pregnancy, and limited to 4 pregnancies. Pregnancies of multiples can receive reimbursement up to 4,000 NIS. Before April 1, more than 2,000 NIS will be reimbursed.
A Few Tips:
- Bring up any medical concerns or important medical history at your first appointment. Do not be afraid to ask questions and advocate for yourself and your baby.
- Ask the doctor to give you the relevant hafnayot (referrals) for future tests as soon as possible.
- Ultrasound appointments fill up quickly through the kupah, so it is important to make all appointments as early as possible. It’s a good idea to make appointments for your first few tests/ultrasounds right after your first doctors appointment. You can always cancel later.
- Many ultrasounds are time sensitive. When making an appointment, double check, and confirm the appointment you are given is during the appropriate time for your pregnancy.
Clinics and Urgent Care:
- Merkaz Briut Haisha: Most kupot have a Merkaz Briut Haisha (Women’s Health Center) or Mirpa’at Nashim (Women’s health clinic) in major cities or areas. Many of them offer walk in services for fetal monitoring, ultrasounds, and consulting with a doctor.
- Mirpaat Geulah: (Jerusalem) Open from 8 AM-7PM, and offers all types of ultrasounds. They work with all kupot (but require a hafnaya and hitchayvut). Even when paying out of pocket, their prices for basic ultrasounds are reasonable, and it is fairly easy to get an appointment.
- TEREM: Many TEREM locations offer ultrasounds, and will be faster than going to the emergency room. It is a good first option if experiencing first trimester bleeding or pains. (Please note: If it is a serious emergency, go straight to the hospital emergency room).
- Miyun Nashim: Some hospitals have a separate ER for maternity patients. Anyone after 24 weeks of pregnancy should go directly to the Miyun Nashim if experiencing any problems.