Four reasons why health plans must address maternal and infant postpartum care

How support at a critical time builds member loyalty and save lives

By Melanie Silverman, MS, RD, IBCLC


As open enrollment closes and payers examine a brand new group of members, they face a core pair of challenges - building member engagement and optimizing health outcomes. Payers are increasingly turning to different types of technology to address both. Tele-lactation, or telehealth that connects new moms with International Board Certified Lactation Consultants (IBCLCs), is one such solution that can advance both goals.

Here are four reasons why health plans should prioritize maternal and infant postpartum care, and how a tele-lactation solution like Pacify can help:
1.  Avoid misuse of the emergency department (ED)

Breastfeeding is something we think of as natural, and because of that we think it’s easy - but it often isn’t. Breastfeeding is a learned skill that takes coaching and practice. Unfortunately, moms covered by Medicaid risk being under-resourced and are often unable to access the support they need to breastfeed successfully. When new moms have a question about breastfeeding it’s important that the question is answered quickly or she risks losing her milk supply. Too often these moms end up in the ED. This can easily be avoided by using a tele-lactation solution that moms can access any time of the day or night. This not only keeps moms and babies out of the ED, thereby lowering costs, but it’s also widely known that breastfeeding itself keeps mothers and babies healthy and lowers healthcare costs.

Pacify has shown a
decrease in non-emergent ED visits
2.  Address postpartum depression

Many of the Internationally Board Certified Lactation Consultants (IBCLCs) at Pacify often have decades of experience, and can spot a new mom who may be struggling with postpartum depression. Because Pacify is a video platform, it provides far more insight into how a new mom is feeling, and Pacify can help make appropriate referrals to treat postpartum depression. This is a critical piece of maternal care that optimizes the mom’s health as well as the baby’s - preventing negative health outcomes and costs down the line.

3.  Safeguard vaccination rates

Vaccinations are critical for the pediatric population and are also important to a payers’ bottom lines if attached to value-based payments. Unfortunately, the pandemic has affected vaccination rates, which puts the pediatric population at risk for outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases.

Pacify has a proven strategy to safeguard vaccination rates with the ability to “nudge” moms with ongoing alerts around vaccination schedules.

Notifications are tailored to each week of the perinatal period, ensuring content is always targeted and relevant.

We compared vaccination rates in one of our Medicaid plans, and found that those members who had Pacify on their smartphones with these vaccination nudges had vaccination rates more than 30% higher than those who did not.

4.   Increase member satisfaction and retention

How often do payers get the opportunity to interact with their members? A customer service representative or care coordinator may get a brief interaction, but the time immediately postpartum when a new mom is most in need of support is a prime opportunity for a payer to build a relationship, and increase satisfaction and retention. Peace of mind is high on the list of what payers can offer new moms, and a tele-lactation solution like Pacify does just that - giving support at the tap of a button, any day, at any time.

Pacify maintains a 4.8/5 star rating across thousands of clinical interactions

Not only is this a chance to create a healthy foundation for babies that will last them into the rest of their lives, but it’s an opportunity for payers to create loyalty through a connection with members when they need it the most. New moms and babies can greatly benefit from the extra layer of support that tele-lactation provides - and the moment it’s needed, the payer becomes the hero.

For more information on why Pacify is important to health plans, watch a recording of our recent webinar with Managed Healthcare Executive:

>>How to Reduce Maternal, Infant Health Risks During COVID-19.

Interested in bringing Pacify to your health plan?

Get in touch to learn more and discuss your organization's specific needs:

Email our VP of Growth at

[email protected]

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