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Increasing Lactation Support Through Community Partnerships

by Monica Esparza, CLC, Community Interpreter
  • Duration: 60 Mins
  • Credits: 1 CERP, 1 L-CERP, 1 Nursing Contact Hours, 0.1 Midwifery CEU, 1 Dietetic CEU
  • Handout: Yes

For low-income, immigrant, and rural families and their infants, access to lactation care is a critical need at one of the most vulnerable times of a child’s life. A root cause of this significant gap is the lack of lactation professionals and lactation-support training for healthcare professionals and home visitors. Knowing that home visitors are critical for families, the New Mexico Breastfeeding Taskforce (NMBTF) conducted a survey in 2020 to ascertain how to help increase home visitors’ knowledge and confidence about lactation issues so they can better support families. The survey results indicated that only 42% of home visitors had ever attended a breastfeeding class and that 100% of those surveyed could benefit from the support of lactation professionals in the communities they serve. In order to address this gap, NMBTF developed a combination of the Home Visitor Lactation Support Program and the Certified Lactation Counselors (CLC) Training programs for Lactation Education and Support Expansion in NM. First, NMBTF is piloting comprehensive lactation training for home visitors that addresses the basic lactation education they need to support the families they serve. The training program is evidence-based and includes culturally sensitive parent education, knowledge about latch and positioning, and guidance for accessing related local community resources. NMBTF partnered with home visiting programs to provide lactation education to their home visitors. Second, NMBTF worked to recruit women of color for the CLC training and provide financial aid. As CLCs, they will then be able to provide a network of expanded and enhanced lactation support in the underserved communities they serve, for their clients, and act as a resource to other home visitors.

Learning Objectives:

1. List two ways that home visitors can help bridge the gap in lactation care and improve breastfeeding/chestfeeding outcomes.

2. Explain the importance of supporting the BIPOC community to access higher lactation education.

3. List 2 steps that can be taken to increase lactation support in your community.

Presentations: 29  |  Hours / CE Credits: 29.5  |  Viewing Time: 8 Weeks