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Pregnancy and Parenthood

    

Pregnancy and Parenthood

*** For information on Command Advisor on Pregnancy and Parenthood (CAPP), please click here. ***

Notification  

When am I required to notify my chain of command of my pregnancy?

You must notify your chain of command no later than two weeks after you receive confirmation from your HCP. 

Note:  Your Commanding Officer will then determine if he/she is required to submit a Pregnancy Availability notification message to PERS-454. 

 

What is a Pregnancy Availability Message?

Pregnancy Availabilities are required for all Service members who are assigned to a deployable command, who have orders to a deployable command, or who are within 12-months of their PRD window returning them to sea duty.

Pregnancy Availabilities must be submitted to PERS-454 as soon as the command is officially notified the Service member is pregnant. 

PERS-4013:  (901) 874-3633 / tld-pregavail@navy.mil

 

If I get pregnant on sea duty, when will I have to leave the ship?

Pregnant Service members may remain onboard up to the 20th week of pregnancy while the ship is in port.  Service member discovered to be pregnant while underway/deployed should be transferred ashore as soon as possible given the constraints of the ship’s location, current mission, next port call, health of the member and/or unborn child(ren), etc. ​ Under no circumstance shall a pregnant Service member remain onboard past the 20th week of pregnancy. 

A pregnant Service member may continue to serve aboard ships only while in port or serve during short underway periods onboard a ship (e.g. local operations including, but not limited to, changes in ship’s berth, ammunition anchorages, and transits to and from local shipyards) provided an evacuation capability exists and the time for medical evacuation to a treatment facility capable of evaluating and stabilizing obstetric emergencies is less than six hours; this requirement includes TAD orders.  The six-hour rule is not intended to allow pregnant members to operate routinely at sea, but rather to provide the CO flexibility during short underway periods, as described above.

** For more information, refer to the "Assignments" section below. **

  

Hospital Delivery

Can I take leave before the birth of my child, in order to deliver at the hospital of my choice (e.g. near family / home of record)?

Service members are not authorized to take leave to travel outside their area of residence for the sole purpose of giving birth at a civilian hospital or to deliver or receive other OB care at a location outside of the MTF area of responsibility or away from the network provider or TRICARE authorized provider while in a leave status.

  

Maternity Convalescent Leave (MCL) 

Can I shift my MCL days, until after my newborn is released from the hospital? 

MCL begins the day after the Service member is discharged from the MTF, following any uncomplicated delivery or cesarean section.  MCL is normally 42 days in duration, unless the attending physician recommends an extension based upon medical complications, indicating the servicewoman is not fit for duty.  Any medically required extensions of MCL will be deducted from Primary Caregiver Leave (PCL).  The servicewoman's permanent command must be notified of this recommendation.  


MCL must be executed in one increment and completed before commencing PCL, and cannot be shifted based upon the newborn child(ren)'s medical complications and extended hospitalization length (e.g. Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) hospital stay).  Upon discharge from a civilian hospital following delivery, the Service member will be granted MCL by the Service member’s parent command.


Premature newborn infants may be in the NICU for an extended period of stay.  During this time period, the infant's health will benefit most from maternal bonding and sustained breastfeeding.  Commands are strongly encouraged to work with MTF staff (e.g. social worker) and review the possibility of assigning the Service member TAD to the MTF for the duration of the NICU stay, in order to support the health and wellbeing of the infant and Service member.  Commands shall ensure that assigning the Service member TAD does not create potential expenditures or entitlements to per diem and other expenses.

 

Operational Deferment  

To whom does Operational Deferment apply?

All postpartum Service members are deferred from all transfers (e.g. PCS, TAD, TEMDU, etc.) to operational assignments for a period of 12 months following delivery.  Postpartum Service members under operational deferment are exempt from participating in short underway and TAD periods, if it inhibits the Service member's ability to breastfeed or care for their child(ren).

Note:  Service members who give birth to a stillborn child(ren) are entitled to 6 months operational deferment to support the mental health of the member, treat postpartum depression as necessary, and allow time to return to physical fitness standards.

Can I waive my Operational Deferment time?

Service members on post-birth 12-month operational deferment may request to terminate deferment at any point after their convalescent leave.  The Service member should submit the waiver request via a NAVPERS 1306/7 sent to their individual detailer and must include endorsements from the Service member, current or prospective operational command, and the member's HCP.  Waivers will be granted on an individual basis and will be coordinated with PERS-454. 

 

Separations/EAOS 

Can I request to separate due to pregnancy?

Pregnant Service members may request separation due to pregnancy.  Requests are normally denied, unless it is determined to be in the best interest of the Navy or if the member demonstrates overriding and compelling factors of personal need which warrant separation.  Refer to MILPERSMAN 1910-112 (enlisted) MILPERSMAN 1920-180 (officer).  

 

If I am pregnant and separating from the Navy before my baby is due, am I eligible for maternity medical treatment following separation?

You are eligible to receive 12 weeks of maternity care following delivery, ONLY under the following conditions:

Service members must be separated under Honorable conditions and that the Military Treatment Facility (MTF) to which you are applying for care, has the capability of providing maternity care (facility's workload will permit the acceptance of your case).  

** It is important that you meet with a Health Benefits Advisor (HBA) at your USMTF prior to your separation from the Navy, in order to make these arrangements.

Note:  Neither the Navy nor TRICARE will pay for civilian maternity care expenses for former Service members who separated from active duty while they were pregnant. 

For more information, refer to MILPERSMAN 1740-030.

 

Can I extend my EAOS to receive maternity care benefits?

An extension of up to one year may be granted in order to receive maternity benefits, provided the member’s performance has been satisfactory and Sailor has CWAY-REEN approval. 

Note:  Consistent with force shaping objectives, pregnant Service members who have an expiring end of active duty obligated service (EAOS) will not be approved for projected rotation date (PRD) adjustment if Career Waypoint - Reenlistment (CWAY-REEN) is not approved.  Pregnancy will not be used as justification for retention.   

  

Assignments 

What is the policy regarding overseas assignment for pregnant Service members?

No Service members may be assigned overseas or travel overseas after the completion of their 28th week of pregnancy.

Will I lose my assignment to a school if I become pregnant?

Assignment of a pregnant Service membeto a school will be handled on a case-by-case basis by the school house CO/OIC.

 

Maternity Uniforms 

Am I required to wear Maternity Uniforms while pregnant or postpartum?

The certified maternity uniform is mandatory for all pregnant Service members in the Navy, when the regular uniform no longer fits.  Enlisted Service members will be given a clothing allowance upon presenting the pregnancy notification from the CO/OIC to the personnel support detachment (PERSUPPDET).

Service members are exempt from the physical readiness program (PRP) during pregnancy and for 6 months following delivery and are therefore not required to purchase larger sized Navy PTUs. Per ACOG and the DOD/VA Uncomplicated Pregnancy Clinical Practice Guideline (DOD/VA UPCPG), Service members with uncomplicated pregnancies should continue to perform an individualized exercise program that incorporates regular mild to moderate exercise in sessions of 30 minutes duration, three or more times per week during the pregnancy. Pregnant Service members may wear the PTU shirt out and will discontinue wearing the PTU when it becomes too tight.

The Service membeis expected to wear regular uniforms upon returning to duty, however, COs may approve the wear of maternity uniforms up to six months from the date of delivery based on medical officer diagnosis and/or recommendations.

Can I wear tennis shoes while pregnant?

At the discretion of a HCP, a pregnant Service membemay be issued a tennis shoe chit, specifying the duration of wear.  Tennis shoes shall be worn in an inconspicuous manner (e.g. all black) and worn without blousing straps for the trousers (e.g. NWUs).

 

Advancement 

Am I required to complete a "special PFA" for frocking or promotion purposes?

Pregnant and postpartum Service members are exempt from "special PFAs" required for frocking and promotion purposes.  Service members shall not be forced to take a PFA before their "pregnancy waiver" period has expired for the sole purpose of frocking and promotion (e.g. CPO-365 Phase II), as indicated in CFL Operating Guide: Managing PFA Records for Pregnant Servicewomen

A "pregnancy waiver" does not meet the requirements for withholding advancement.  Pregnant and postpartum Service members shall not have their frocking deferred or their advancement withdrawn, unless the Service membewas not recommended for retention and/or is undergoing administrative separation processing.   

  

Exercise 

Am I required to participate (or can I participate) in command/unit PT or take the PFA now that I’m pregnant?

Pregnant Service members will NOT:

  • Participate in command/unit PT;
  • Participate in FEP;
  • Participate in Mock PFAs; or
  • Participate in the command PFA
  • Participate in BCA Spot Checks

Note:  Pregnant Service members shall receive guidance from their HCP concerning type and duration of physical activity to maintain appropriate physical conditioning and body composition. 

***

For more information, see CFL Operating Guide 8: Managing PFA Records for Pregnant Servicewomen.

 

How soon after I deliver am I required to participate in command PT or take a PFA?

Postpartum Service members are waived from completing a PFA (both BCA and PRT sections) for six-months after the end of their maternity convalescent leave (MCL).  At the conclusion of this six-month period, Service members are required to complete the next regularly scheduled command PFA.     

Month PFA Waiver Expires:

Participate in PFA  Cycle:

Participate in PFA Cycle Beginning:

January

2

July

February

2

July

March

2

July

April

2

July

May

2

July

June

2

July

July

1

January

August

1

January

September

1

January

October

1

January

November

1

January

December

1

January


      ·         If the Service member's six-month waiver expires during one PFA cycle (Jan-June or July-Dec) the member is then automatically rolled to participate in the next PFA cycle.

·         PFA cycle dates cannot be shifted for the individual Service member.

·         A special PFA will not be conducted.

·         PRIMS should annotate the member had a pregnancy waiver (do not enter it as a medical waiver).

Note:  If the member is struggling with the BCA, the CO has the authority to assign the member to FEP, provided they have been medically cleared by their HCP.  

***

For more information, see CFL Operating Guide: Managing PFA Records for Pregnant Servicewomen.


Am I subject to the new BCA Spot Checks while within my 6-month postpartum PFA waiver?


No, postpartum Service members are exempt from the BCA spot checks while in their 6-month postpartum PFA waiver period.

 

Am I required to participate in the PFA or command PT if I have a miscarriage or abortion?

The Service member's HCP may waive participation from the PFA and command PT for a set period of time, while the Service memberecovers. 

 ***

For more information, see CFL Operating Guide: Managing PFA Records for Pregnant Servicewomen

 

Breastfeeding in the Workplace 

Can I breastfeed at work?

The Navy continues to encourage and support accommodations to best meet the needs of our nursing Service members and their infants.  Service members who continue to provide breast milk upon return to duty will be, at the minimum, afforded the availability of a clean, secluded space (not a toilet space) with ready access to a water source for the purpose of pumping breast milk.  The number of breaks needed to express breast milk is greatest when the infant is youngest, then gradually decreases.  Commands must ensure breastfeeding Service members are afforded access to cool storage for expressed breast milk.

Requests to breastfeed infants during duty hours are handled on a case-by-case basis and accommodations of these requests remain at the discretion of each Service member's Commanding Officer. 

I am concerned about possible lactation hazards where I work.  What should I do?

Discuss potential occupational hazards with your health care provider (HCP).  Also, verify if a Military Treatment Facility (MTF) and/or Fleet Industrial Hygienist have evaluated the presence of possible reproductive and lactation hazards at your command, to include potential exposure to agents on the NAVENVHLTHCEN list. 

Note:  This is normally conducted during the baseline industrial hygiene site survey.  Positive findings are reported directly to the Commanding Officer, Safety Officer, and Senior Medical Department Representative (SMDR).

Support of Servicewomen in Lactation and Breastfeeding (BUMEDINST 6000.14A​

 

Housing

Can I live in the BEQ/BOQ while pregnant?

A pregnant Service member with no family members may reside in Bachelor Quarters for her full term.

 

Can a single pregnant servicewoman live in Government Housing?

Commanding Officers may authorize single pregnant Service members to move into government housing based on availability before the birth of the child. 

 

Can I receive BAH before my dependent child is born?

The Commanding Officer can authorize BAH, if requested, in order for a Service member to occupy off-base housing prior to the 20th week of pregnancy.  Once the Service member is 20+ weeks, the host commander must approve the request to occupy off-base housing.   

 

Family Care Plan

When am I required to submit my Family Care Plan?

You are required to maintain a Family Care Plan (FCP) when you meet one or more of the following requirements:  single parent, domestically separated parent, dual military parent, have custody of a minor child, and/or are a divorced Service member with minor children.  Refer to OPNAVINST 1740.4E.

  

Flight Status

Can I remain in flight status if I’m pregnant?

Flight personnel are authorized to fly with the concurrence of their CO, obstetrician and flight surgeon after requesting to continue to fly while pregnant.  This request will initiate the convening of a Local Board of Flight Surgeons (LBFS), in order to assess the health of the pregnant Service member and the potential impact flying may have on the Service member and their unborn child(ren).  If the LBFS assesses acceptable risk to continue flying, a waiver to fly during the second trimester only will be granted from the Naval Aerospace Medical Institute (NAMI).  However, flying during pregnancy is prohibited in single-piloted aircraft, ejection seat aircraft, high performance aircraft that will operate in excess of 2Gs, aircraft involved in shipboard operations, or flights with cabin altitudes that exceed 10,000 feet.    

 

Pregnancy and Parenthood Mobile Application

These references and additional resources can also be found by utilizing the Pregnancy and Parenthood mobile application.  To download visit your Android/iOS mobile device application store and type key word "seawarrior" or "Pregnancy and Parenthood."

 

POC:  Navy Inclusion and Diversity:  ALTN_USN_INCLUSION_AND_DIVERSITY@navy.mil ​​​

 
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Last Modified: 7/11/2018 3:17 PM
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