Ochsner is devoted to creating an environment where mothers interested in breastfeeding their babies have the best support services available in the area. The Ochsner Medical Center - West Bank Lactation Center provide the proper knowledge, education and tools to women interested in breastfeeding options.
Ochsner Medical Center–West Bank Campus is certified as a Gift (Guided Infant Feeding Techniques) certified facility and has received the Golden Gift Breastfeeding Award. The Gift is a quality improvement and certification program for Louisiana birthing facilities based on the best practice model to increase breastfeeding initiation, duration and support.
The award and certification are presented on behalf of the Louisiana Maternal and Child Health Coalition, the Louisiana Perinatal Commission and the Louisiana Office of Public Health – Maternal and Child Health Program. Currently, there are 24 Gift-certified birthing facilities in the state of Louisiana. To learn more about Gift certification, visit http://www.thegiftla.org.
Baby-friendly hospitals and birth centers uphold the International Code of Marketing of Breast Milk Substitutes by offering education and educational materials that promote human milk rather than other infant food and drinks, and by refusing to accept or distribute free or subsidized supplies of breast milk substitutes, nipples, and other feeding devices.
Ochsner encourages breastfeeding and follows these "Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding"
- Have a written breastfeeding policy that is routinely communicated to all health care staff.
- Train all health care staff in skills necessary to implement this policy.
- Inform all pregnant women about the benefits and management of breastfeeding.
- Help mothers initiate breastfeeding within one hour of birth.
- Show mothers how to breastfeed and how to maintain lactation, even if they are separated from their infants.
- Give infants no food or drink other than breast milk, unless medically indicated.
- Practice rooming-in (allow mothers and infants to remain together) 24 hours a day.
- Encourage breastfeeding on demand.
- Give no artificial nipples or pacifiers to breastfeeding infants.
- Foster the establishment of breastfeeding support groups and refer mothers to them on discharge from the hospital or clinic.
Now is the time in your pregnancy to start thinking about breastfeeding your newborn. The Lactation Center offers FREE prenatal consultations to help you with your breastfeeding concerns or questions. Our certified lactation consultants will introduce you to the principles of breastfeeding. We will review your history and discuss community resources and develop an individualized plan of care for establishing breastfeeding.
For those mothers who plan on returning to work or school soon after giving birth, the lactation consultants can help develop individualized plans to ensure that new mothers and their babies don’t miss out on the opportunity to breastfeed. Consultations include the creation of a personalized plan and recommendations for the use of appropriate breast pumps. Please call 504-391-5195 or email us at FamilyUnitWB@ochsner.org to register for your prenatal consultation.
Prenatal Breastfeeding Class
This class is designed to provide detailed information on the basics of breastfeeding. In a group setting you will learn the correct techniques for breastfeeding, and how to begin breastfeeding while in the hospital as well as some anticipatory guidance for breastfeeding once you get home. Please call 504-391-5195 to register for a prenatal class.
For those times when telephone assistance just isn’t enough, lactation counselors are available for in person assistance. We can also work with you to devise a plan for continuing to breastfeed once you go back to work. To make an appointment, please call 504-391-5195.
Breast pumps, breast pump parts and accessories, lanolin, and more are available through the Lactation Center located on the second floor of the hospital. For those new mothers in need of a hospital grade pump or who would like to try pumping before purchasing a pump, hospital grade rentals are available. For more information, please call 504-391-5195.
Telephone Warm Line
Ochsner wants to offer continued assistance and support after you are discharged from the hospital. Should you have questions or concerns about breastfeeding, please call the Ochsner Lactation Warm Line at 504-391-5195. If you reach the recording, please leave a detailed message and a lactation consultant will return your call.