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 9 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 member is 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.
For maternity flight suit, this is an organizational clothing item which can be ordered via command's supply process after reviewing Technical Manual NAVAIR 13-1- 6.7-2-020 Organizational And Intermediate Maintenance Instructions With Illustrated Parts Breakdown Aircrew Personal Protective Equipment (Clothing) Volume 2.
Can I wear tennis shoes while pregnant?
At the discretion of a HCP, a pregnant Service member may 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).
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 Initiation), as indicated in CFL Operating Guidebook 8: Managing PFA Records for Pregnant Servicewomen (JAN 2022).
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 member was not recommended for retention and/or is undergoing administrative separation processing.
Am I required to participate (or can I participate) in command/unit PT or take the PFA now that I’m pregnant?
During the pregnancy and until 12 months after delivery, Pregnant Service members will NOT be required to:
In PRIMS, these will be marked as a code for pregnancy. You will complete an unofficial PFA at 6 to 9 months postpartum after approval of your HCP. This test is to track your status prior to an official PFA
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. Members are permitted to participate in command/unit PT to their level of comfort and in accordance with the HCP's direction should they choose to do so. **It is the HCP's responsibility, not the CFL, to provide exercise guidance.
As of July 2021, CFLs may provide pregnant/postpartum Servicewomen with the official Navy Pregnancy and Postpartum Physical Training (P3T) resources. These resources will include information on pregnancy/postpartum nutrition and a safe physical training program complete with recommended exercises and contraindicated exercises. Postpartum Servicewomen are encouraged to maintain a regular fitness routine during their pregnancy and are required to gradually resume an exercise program under the guidance of their HCP and/or Navy P3T resources.
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 an official PFA (both BCA and PRT sections) for twelve months following the birth event. At the conclusion of this twelve-month period, and with medical approval from their health care provider (HCP), Servicewomen are required to participate in the official PFA cycle, as prescribed in table below from Guidebook 8 (JAN 2022). Servicewomen may participate in command PT after passing the wellness PFA.
**Postpartum Policy Change** As per guidance set forth in NAVADMIN 129/21 - Expansion of Postpartum PFA exemption - Effective 1 July 2021, pregnant and postpartum Sailors are exempt from participating in the PFA, to include BCA and PRT, from the time a pregnancy is confirmed by a Health Care Provider (HCP) until the end of 12 months (vice previous 9 months guidance) following a qualified birth event (QBE) in line with PRP Guide 8 (JAN 2022). This change allows postpartum Sailors time to fully recover in a healthy manner prior to being required to meet fitness and body composition standards.**
∙ If the Service member's twelve-month waiver expires during one PFA cycle (Jan-June or July-Dec) the member is then rolled to participate in the next PFA cycle.
∙ PFA cycle dates cannot be shifted for the individual Service member.
∙ An official PFA will not be conducted during the 12 month PFA exemption period following a QBE. At 6 to 9 months postpartum, and with medical approval by HCP/AMDR, a wellness PFA screening (unofficial) will be completed to assess postpartum service member's health and fitness level and provide opportunity to provide assistance to Servicewomen during their postpartum recovery.
∙ PRIMS should annotate the member had a pregnancy waiver for every cycle the member is exempt (do not enter it as a medical waiver).
For more information, see CFL Operating Guide 8: Managing PFA Records for Pregnant Servicewomen (JAN 2022).
Am I subject to BCA Spot Checks while within my 12-month postpartum PFA exemption?
Postpartum Servicewomen are NOT subject to BCA spot checks during the 12-month PFA exemption period following a QBE. Postpartum Servicewomen will participate in a wellness (unofficial) PFA between six and nine months postpartum, following a QBE. If the postpartum Servicewoman fails, there will be no negative consequences for failing, and they will not be placed on FEP. FL Operating Guide 8: Managing PFA Records for Pregnant Servicewomen (JAN 2022).
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 member recovers. Servicewomen who miscarry or have an abortion must seek evaluation by their HCP to determine the appropriate convalescent leave period. A member who suffers a miscarriage or abortion may receive a "pregnant" status based on the recommendation from their HCP.
For more information, see CFL Operating Guide 8: Managing PFA Records for Pregnant Servicewomen (JAN 2022).
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 running water for handwashing and pump equipment cleaning near or within the same room as the lactation room. The lactation room must also have electrical outlets and be located within a reasonable proximity of the workspace. 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.
For more information, see our Breastfeeding in the Navy page
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.
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).
Also see, Support of Servicewomen in Lactation and Breastfeeding (BUMEDINST 6000.14B)
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 on shore duty to occupy off-base housing prior to the 20th week of pregnancy if unaccompanied housing is at 95% occupancy or greater. 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.
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."
Separations/EAOS - SEE COVID-19 NOTIFICATION AT TOP OF PAGE
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).
Updated November 2022