Lactation & Breastfeeding Services
The Family Birth Place Lactation Department within Mary Washington Healthcare
is an extensive resource for breastfeeding mothers and babies in our community.
Our lactation consultants are highly-trained nurses who are also certified by the
International Board of Certified Lactation Consultants,
Outpatient Lactation Consultations
Although breastfeeding is natural, learning does not come easily for all
new moms, and sometimes even experienced moms may struggle with a new
issue. If you’re concerned about the amount of milk you’re
producing, the baby’s weight or are having issues pumping, we offer
personal consultations with you and your baby. Some problems may be addressed
over the phone, but other issues need a personal visit. We invite you
and your baby to come in to address your concerns with one of our certified
lactation consultants. They will offer you individualized guidance, tips,
and tools to make breastfeeding more comfortable for you and your baby.
Based on the nature of the consultation, there is a scale available to
check a pre-feed and post-feed weight to make sure your baby is receiving
an adequate supply of milk. When bringing your infant to the consultation,
keep in mind that we will want the baby to feed, so it would be best to
have the consult at a time when he/she will be interested in feeding,
but not overly hungry. Please also allow 20-30 minutes for the check-in
time at the Patient Access Office. Consultations usually last between
1 - 1.5 hours.
There is a fee for consultations and the charges can be filed to your health
insurance. Please call your insurance provider to verify specific coverage
as this varies greatly.
If a full outpatient consultation is not needed, new moms can call the
Lactation Services Department to address your breastfeeding concerns over
the phone. If a lactation consultant is not available to speak with you
immediately, your phone call will be returned by the next business day.
To schedule a lactation consultation, please call the MWHC Lactation Services
Department - 540.741.4465*
*You do not have to have delivered your baby at one of our hospitals to
use these services.
Inpatient Lactation Services
Breastfeeding is one of the best things a new mother can do to help her
baby grow and develop. Most mothers can breastfeed successfully and we
are here to help. Before your baby arrives, we offer classes to help prepare
you for nursing. At the birthing centers at MWHC, our mother-baby nurses
are available to support you. We also have certified lactation consultants
to help you and your baby get off to a good start while you are in the
hospital. After you go home, lactation consultants are available by phone
daily to answer questions or schedule appointments. We offer a free Moms
& Babies group that meets weekly, led by a certified lactation consultant.
Breastfeeding assistance and consultations are provided for you and your
baby while you are patients at either Mary Washington or Stafford Hospital
by your team of nurses and lactation consultants. The nurse will meet
with you and determine your personal needs. If your baby is admitted to
our NICU, our lactation consultant is also there to assist you with any
special requirements as well. We can also provide lacation services to
a mother and/or baby in any unit within our hospitals.
The Lactation Department may be reached by phone at 540.741.4465. You may
leave a message and someone can call you back within 12 hours, or you
can follow the prompts to reach a Health Link nurse anytime, day or night.
Most outpatient consultations are covered by insurance. Mothers who come
in for an appointment will need to register at the Patient Access department
prior to the visit.
After Hours Assistance
If you have breastfeeding concerns after hours that need to be addressed
immediately, the Lactation Services Department phone number will forward
you to a Health Link nurse that can assist you, or you can call Health
Link Nurse Line direct at 540.741.1000.
Medical Arts Pharmacy (Mary Washington Hospital) 540.741.1425
Which pump is best to buy?
When purchasing a breast pump, please consider your needs for use. If
you are going to be a full-time working mother, you will succeed best
with a double electric pump. If you will be an at-home mother with only
an occasional need to pump, a single electric pump or even a manual pump
may be adequate. There are many online resources that will provide you
with a comparison of brands and uses.
This 2.5-hour class is for both moms and dads and focuses on the basics
of breastfeeding your newborn. Preparation and education will help you
feel more confident as you start this journey. We will also discuss pumps,
when to start pumping, milk storage, and returning to work. Classes are
taught by Certified Lactation Consultants. Plan to attend this class prior
to your delivery so you will feel more confident breastfeeding your baby
right from the start.
Moms and Babies Group
New mothers and their babies up to six months of age are welcome to attend
this group. This is a great place to meet other new mothers. There is
no cost for the group and registration is not required. There is a baby
scale available to weigh your baby. A nurse who is also a lactation consultant
is there to answer questions and to facilitate group discussion. To maintain
the comfort and privacy of our moms, we ask that dads not attend, however,
Grandmas are welcome.
You do not have to be a breastfeeding mother to attend, combination feeding
or formula feeding moms and babies are welcome to attend.
This class is located in the Carl D. Silver Auditorium (rear entrance of
the Moss Free Clinic) each Wednesday 10:00 to 11:30 a.m.. For more information,
please call 540.741.4465.
Childbirth and Parenting Calendar to find the class that is right for you.
Call MWHC Health Link between 9am and 4pm for pricing and registration
The local La Leche League
also offers breastfeeding support groups.
La Leche League is an international, nonprofit, nonsectarian organization
dedicated to providing education, information, support and encouragement
to women who want to breastfeed. It may be helpful to begin attending
a few months prior to delivering your baby.