Resources and Planning for Families

This information was compiled in August 2017. Information about childcare options was kindly provided by the ISMMS Parents’ group. Please contact us with any updates or corrections!

Pre-conception/family planning

Where to go: Students with private insurance (such as Aetna student insurance) can be seen at Faculty Practice Associates (FPA) OB/Gyn. Students with Medicaid cannot be seen at FPA and have to go to hospital OB/Gyn or elsewhere.


  • As of August 2017, oral contraceptive pills are fully covered by insurance with no copay under the Affordable Care Act
  • As of August 2017, the Sinai employee pharmacy, which does not bill insurance for students, also provides oral contraceptive pills with no copay

Getting pregnant: You may want to see your OB/Gyn when you are first thinking about getting pregnant (even if you are still using contraception) to discuss any concerns you have, discuss nutritions/vitamins, and/or consider genetic testing



Prenatal vitamins: The employee pharmacy, which does not bill insurance for students, charges $15/month for prenatal vitamins

  • Your insurance may cover prenatal vitamins at a lower copay. In this case, get this prescription filled elsewhere
  • Other medications are often CHEAPER through the employee pharmacy than through insurance

You may wish to designate a health care proxy if you don’t have one already.


Preparing for a new child

Parental leave policies

Medical school: Page 95 of the handbook

  • Under “Personal LOA” (Leave of Absence)
      • Year 1-2: You may use excused absences for up to 2 weeks. After that you will likely be on a LOA. LOA may be up to a year, but can be converted to scholarly year at any time. Courses have prerequisites so this limits your scheduling options. See also “Flexibility of Year 1 and 2 ” on pg. 98.
      • Year 3-4: If you miss more than 2 days of a rotation, you may need to make it up. You may use up to 8 weeks of excused absences, your schedule permitting. You may need to reschedule clerkships. After 8 weeks, you may use LOA up to one year, but you may return to clerkships or convert to scholarly year anytime before that.
      • Note (this is not explicitly stated in the policy): between years 2-3, you may have the option to begin year 3 as late as October and complete your clerkships on a modified schedule. Speak to MedEd if you are interested in this.
      • See also “Decelerated Year” on pg. 98.
  • You may continue to purchase and be on Aetna student insurance during LOA

Graduate school: Page 27 of the handbook

  • Under “Parental Leave”
    • Discuss your leave with your thesis advisor 4-5 months in advance
    • Maternity leave (childbirth and adoption): 8 weeks of leave provided, which can be before/after delivery. You may extend this to 12 weeks with vacation time, followed by unpaid leave. Housing and insurance are NOT provided by the school during unpaid leave. You may add medical leave if needed.
    • Paternity leave (childbirth and adoption): 2 weeks provided.
  • Coursework:
    • PhD or MD/PhD: Speak to your MTA director(s) about whether you should register for required coursework that you expect to miss
    • MD/PhD in MD1-2 or PhD phase: Speak to Talia Swartz about whether you should register for Medical Scientist Grand Rounds

Financial aid

  • MD students may already be in touch with Student Financial Services regarding aid for tuition and other expenses
  • PhD and MD/PhD students typically do not receive financial aid, since tuition and stipend are already covered. However, PhD and MD/PhD students MAY BE ELIGIBLE for financial aid when the cost of attendance is greater than the package provided by the school due to a dependent.
    • PhD and MD/PhD students in this situation may be eligible for federal student loans, but NOT for Mount Sinai institutional aid.
  • Financial aid offers may be made or adjusted for the following items associated with a child:
    • Rent higher than the school’s typical estimate ($9,500/year as of August 2017)
    • Child’s health insurance (see below for options)
    • Regular childcare (see below for Sinai daycare)
      • Babysitting or irregular care is not included
    • Other costs (i.e. food, clothes) cannot be used to adjust financial aid
  • To apply for or adjust your financial aid:
    1. Email
    2. Fill out the current FAFSA (or for the schoolyear in which you will have your child)
    3. Submit the school’s financial aid application from Student Financial Services
    4. Submit documentation of expenses, such as a rent statement, health insurance bill, or daycare invoice


Healthcare for your child:

  • If your child will have private insurance, such as the Aetna student insurance, you may wish to choose a pediatrician ahead of time.
    • If you are getting care at Mount Sinai FPA OB/Gyn, choose an FPA pediatrician before birth and have the pediatrician’s name with you when you check in to deliver at Mount Sinai. The team caring for you will contact your pediatrician and ask them to see your baby while you are in the hospital.
  • If your child will be on public insurance such as Child Health Plus or Children’s Medicaid, they cannot be seen at FPA and will need to go to Pediatrics Associates instead if they are getting care at Mount Sinai. These pediatricians cannot see your baby while you are in the hospital for delivery, so an FPA pediatrician will be assigned instead.
    • Call 212-659-8559 after birth to schedule an appointment for your child with Pediatrics Associates.


  • The Affordable Care Act requires that insurers cover breastfeeding support and supplies.
  • Mount Sinai has two pumping rooms in Annenberg.
    • Room 234 on the MC level of Annenberg in the same hallway as the Employee Pharmacy. It is available 24/7 but you need a code to enter. Contact Medical Education (212-241-6691) or WiMSTP for the code.
    • There is a second lactation room on the main floor of the lobby to the left of the elevator bank designated for floors 1-10. This room is also available for use 24 hours a day, however you must reserve it by calling the Medical Education front desk at 212-241-6691, Monday to Friday, 8:30 am – 5:30 pm to receive the security code.
    • If you do not have your own pump, Medela pumps are provided in the rooms. You can find more information about how to use the pumps here.


  • You may wish to begin applying for childcare as soon as possible if you think you might need it, as waitlists can be quite long.
  • For children newborn through 5 years old age, there are three main types of child care services available; (i) child care centers, (ii) family child care, and (iii) in-home care.
    1. Child Care Centers (day care center, child care center, early childhood program) Child care centers usually group children by age and have a classroom-like environment. Although, center-based programs usually provide a full day of care, part-day or part-week programs might also be offered by some centers. Staff to child ratio regulations depend on the age of child. The average cost for full time care in Upper East Side ranges from $1,800- $3,000/month. The cost is usually more for younger children since they require more care and staff. Whereas some centers follow a school calendar (September to June), some are open year-round. Please be advised that child care centers in NYC area have long waitlists up to a yearlong. Below is a small listing of some child care centers in Upper East Side area.
      • Mount Sinai Kids (Imagine Early Learning Center):Mount Sinai Kids is a private center on 97th St between Park Ave and Madison Ave serving children ages 2 months to 5 years of Mount Sinai employees as well as families from the surrounding communities. Mount Sinai partially subsidizes the cost of daycare for employees and students.
          • The waitlist is quite long, so apply as soon as possible
          • You must go on a tour and submit a $25 fee to get on the waitlist. Tours are available on Wednesdays
          • Only full-time care is available, not part-time
          • Siblings of current attendees are given priority
          • As of August 2017, Imagine tuition for children of Mount Sinai employees or students:
            • $2000/month for full tuition
            • $1845/month if your income is less than $150,000/year
          • 60 East 97th Street, New York, NY 10029
          • Phone: 212-410-2077
      • Sunshine Learning Center
        • 1595 Lexington Avenue, New York, NY 10029
        • Phone: 212-444-2026
      • Preschool of America
        • Location1:
          • 1190 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10028
          • Phone: 212-410-1100
        • Location2:
          • 1501 Lexington Avenue, New York, NY 10128
          • Phone: 212-987-3700
      • Goddard School
        • 1725 York Ave, New York, NY 10128
        • Phone: 212-860-5306
      • Manhattan Schoolhouse
        • 1624 First Avenue, New York, NY 10028
        • Phone: 212-772-2066
      • The House of Little People
        • Location1:
          • 122 E 91st St, New York, NY 10128
          • Phone: 212-369-2740
        • Location2:
          • 129 East 90th St, New York, NY 10128
          • Phone: 212-860-8116
      • Bright Horizons
        • 245 E 92nd St, New York, NY 10128
        • Phone: 212-369-9626
      • Lexington Children’s Center
        • 115 E 98th St, New York, NY 10029
        • Phone: 212-423-9727
    2. Family Child Care In family child care, a caregiver provides care for small groups of children in the caregiver’s own home. In NYC, family child care services are licensed and regulated by the NYS Office of Children and Families. This type of care is given to children aged 8 weeks to 12 years. Staff to child ratio depends on age and provider’s own children under age of 12 also taken into consideration. In some family child cares (group family child care), caregiver might have assistants. The average cost ranges from $250-$450/week. Below is a small listing of family child care services and links for online searching.
      • Jelly Bean Group Family Day Care
        • 516 E 84th Street #1E, New York, NY 10028
        • Phone: 917-409-0496
      • Jody’s Shining Stars Inc.
        • 1660 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10029
        • Phone: 212-369-8333
      • My Three Angels Group Daycare Corp.
        • 219 East 97th Street, Apt. 14G, New York, NY 10029
        • Phone: 212-722-8987
      • You can search through following links based on school district or zip code:
    3. In-Home Care In-home care is provided by a caregiver (nanny or babysitter) in your home. Caregivers may either “live-in” in your home or “live out”. Full-time nanny costs $500-$1,000/week on average, and part time nanny cost $15-$20/hour. When hiring a full-time caregiver you should also keep in mind the expenses of taxes and health insurance. You can find a nanny through an agency, by searching online, through your friends or colleagues, or looking for flyers in the neighborhood.
      • Following links are some sources to search a nanny or babysitter online:
      • Nanny sharing is another popular way for childcare in New York city. It is cheaper than having a full-time nanny and still has advantages of in-home care. You should first find a family who would be interested in nanny sharing. Below are some links related to nanny-sharing:
  • Care for older children:
    • Afterschool Programs, Holiday camps Although child care centers are cheaper than having a nanny, they don’t cover school holidays. Also, if your child is attending a school/preschool you may need an afterschool program. You may check following links to discover some options:
    • Summer camps Some child care centers are open year-round but some follow school calendar and are closed during the summer months. Following are some available summer camp options in Upper East area:
      • (West side)
    • Backup care When your regular daycare is unavailable (if your sitter calls out sick or if the day care is closed), you may need a back-up care!
      • You may call a babysitter through following options:
      • There are also some drop-in options:

Connect with other parents:

  • Join the ISMMS Parents’ slack
  • Following are some facebook groups to connect other parents in the area:
    • Mount Sinai Parent
    • Moms of the Upper East Side (MUES)
    • NYC Moms – Upper East Side
  • NYC Dads Group holds events and connects dads across the city
  • Mommy Poppins provides an extensive event listing, as well as information about camps, classes, destinations to go with kids