Family Resources

Postdoc Insurance Coverage

View the full Postdoc Insurance Coverage Policy

In order to promote a supportive environment for postdoctoral research excellence, Case Western Reserve University (CWRU) is committed to ensuring our postdoctoral scholars and fellows receive fully funded, comprehensive, and quality healthcare coverage for themselves and their family members. Postdoctoral Scholars and Fellows appointed through the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs can enroll themselves and their dependents in the Postdoctoral Benefits Program, consisting of medical, dental, vision, and life insurance. It is the responsibility of the faculty mentor, department, and/or school/college to determine the funding source(s) to pay for one-hundred percent (100%) of the benefits program monthly premiums for postdocs and their dependents. 

Child Care Subsidy

Introduced in 2024, the Child Care Subsidy helps support the cost of childcare for children six and under. Parents must apply annually to receive the subsidy, which will be prorated for the 2024 fiscal year. The subsidy will be based on household adjusted gross income. Applications to the program will be open April 1 through May 15, 2024.

Read eligibility requirements carefully; any questions should be directed to 

Childcare Resources

Pediatric Emergency Care

The following location is covered by the Aetna HNO and POS plan for Pediatric Emergency care. However, you can still take your child to any emergency room.

Rainbow Babies and Children's Hospital - 11100 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland Ohio

Child Care Support During Travel

Childcare Support During Travel is offered through the Office of Human Resources. 

Child care can become particularly challenging when a parent must take a trip for work or study—for example, a conference, a research opportunity, or out-of-town meeting. The university has established a fund to supplement a portion of the additional costs of care.

Postdocs qualify to utilize this benefit. See the HR website for requirements and more information.

Physical Resource Center (Food Pantry)

The Physical Resource Center is a food pantry open to all students, staff, faculty, and postdocs.

Parental Leave Policy

Find the Paid Parental Leave policy here

Quick Highlights:

  • Postdoctoral Scholars are eligible for Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave if they satisfy eligibility requirements. Postdoctoral Fellows are not eligible for FMLA leave. However, all postdocs may receive Paid Parental Leave, regardless of FMLA eligibility. 
  • Postdoctoral Scholars and Fellows are eligible for up to 8 weeks of Paid Parental Leave for the birth, adoption, or foster care placement of a child. 
  • If both parents/certified domestic partners work at the university, the maximum Paid Parental Leave for both together is 11 weeks. This leave may be split up however the two parents agree, provided no parent takes more than eight weeks Paid Parental Leave. 
  • Eligible postdocs (Scholars) may receive up to 12 weeks FMLA leave for parenting leave, depending on the amount available. The eight weeks of Paid Parental leave may be combined with other paid timed off (accrued vacation time or paid sick time) to achieve the maximum amount of paid time during the FMLA parenting leave. Prior to commencing unpaid FMLA leave, a postdoc Scholar must exhaust all available sick pay and accrued vacation hours. 
  • For those not covered by the FMLA policy (Fellows), you may use up to eight weeks of Paid Parental Leave, combined with other available paid time off (sick and vacation time) up to a maximum of 12 weeks. 
  • All Paid Parental Leave must be completed within twelve month of the date of birth, adoption, or foster placement of the child. 
  • Postdocs may receive up to 2 weeks of Paid Parental Leave for stillbirth. Additional leave time may be available under the FMLA policy. 

Childcare Costs for NIH NRSA Fellows

In April 2021, NIH began providing childcare cost support to recipients of full-time NRSA fellowships in recognition that the high cost of childcare impacts graduate students and post-doctorates funded through NRSA fellowships, and hinders their ability to successfully complete their training and fully participate in the extramural research workforce. 

The NRSA childcare costs apply to full-time NIH-NRSA-supported fellowship positions and each full-time predoctoral or postdoctoral NIH-NRSA-supported institutional research training award appointment. Each full-time NIH-NRSA-supported fellow and full-time predoctoral or postdoctoral NRSA appointed trainee is eligible to receive $2,500 per budget period for childcare costs provided by a licensed childcare provider.

Find more information here about the NIH's NRSA Childcare Costs

Pregnancy Accommodations

If you are pregnant and/or undergoing a pregnancy-related medical treatment and would like an accommodation involving your employment responsibilities, please contact the Office of Equity for a confidential consultation.

Support for pregnant and parenting students, postdocs and employees covers anyone who is:

  • pregnant;
  • dealing with infertility, false pregnancy, termination of pregnancy, prenatal appointments, high risk pregnancy, common pregnancy complaints and miscarriage, and recovery from any of these events;
  • caring for an infant, when these events have potential to negatively impact academic or work success.

Lactation Rooms

A comprehensive list of Lactation Rooms can be be found here

Postdoc Benefits Program and Reproductive Health 

Find additional information about the Postdoc Benefits Program and medical resources relating to reproductive health on our Health Insurance / Wellness website

Parents in the Pipeline Report by the NPA

Based on institutional data and a survey of nearly 1,000 postdoc parents, Parents in the Pipeline: Retaining Postdoctoral Researchers with Families sheds new light on the impact that parenthood has on the postdoc experience, and what institutions can do to keep postdoc parents in the STEM pipeline.

The report includes:

  • Survey and institutional policy data on pregnancy accommodations, paid and unpaid parental leave, attitudes about leave, and benefits for postdoc parents;
  • Survey data revealing significant differences in the experiences of postdocs who are immigrants and/or people of color; and,
  • Examples and recommendations on how institutions can better support postdoc parents and reduce liability.

Read the Report Here