Dentsu UK&I has launched a dedicated policy to support parents of premature or critical ill babies receiving neonatal care in hospital.
The policy applies to parents of babies who require more than seven days of neonatal care after being born critically ill or admitted in to hospital up to the age of 28 days, or born prematurely before 37 weeks of pregnancy.
It takes effect from the first day of employment and provides up to 12 weeks of additional paid parental leave for each week a baby is cared for in hospital as well as a range of emotional and practical support for parents within Dentsu and via external sources.
Katie Duance, head of marketing at Dentsu UK&I, who was involved in the creation of the new policy, said: “Nothing can prepare you for what is to come when labour begins prematurely, and the unique challenges and emotions that time on the neonatal ward will bring — or time away from it when partner leave is up all too soon.
“The emotional, logistical and financial burdens can be overwhelming. This new policy will make a huge difference to parents experiencing the challenges of having a premature or sick baby — providing them with crucial time and financial security so they can focus on the most important thing together, the health and care of their baby.”
This policy comes during Neonatal Intensive Care Awareness this month which highlights more than 90,000 babies in the UK are cared for in neonatal units after being born prematurely (before 37 weeks of hospital), or unwell at full term (after 37 weeks), which works out to around one in seven babies born in the UK being admitted to a neonatal unit on a yearly basis.
Similarly, last year UM and Bloom UK carried out research around the stigma still surrounding miscarriage in the advertising and media industry, which found nearly 80% of people who have lost a baby feel the advertising and media industry still has a long way to go when it comes to adequately supporting parents.