EVERETT – Washington State has one of the highest percentages of parents who choose breastfeeding at the time of childbirth, but starting or maintaining lactation can be problematic for some parents , and that’s when the Providence Everett Breastfeeding and Postpartum Clinic steps in to help.
According to a CDC Breastfeeding Newsletter 2020 When surveying parents of babies born in 2017, 92.5% of Washington state parents made the choice to breastfeed at some point in the infant’s first year. However, the number of breastfeeding parents decreases to 74.6% at 6 months. Various circumstances can cause the parents’ milk supply to be reduced during breastfeeding, or sometimes a baby is born before milk has started to be produced in the parent.
The Providence Lactation and Post-Partum Clinic helps families overcome issues of low milk supply by providing lactation support, breast milk donations through the Providence Milk Bank, and frenotomy procedures to correct the “tongue tie” that interferes with the infant’s ability to breastfeed.
Frenotomy procedures, a newer service offered by the clinic that corrects the abnormal frenulum impairing the newborn’s ability to latch on, are performed by a pediatrician brought to the clinic. The clinic works with Providence Family Maternity Center and offers additional postpartum support services such as newborn jaundice checks, weight checks, parent lactation consultations, prenatal lactation consultations and latching assistance.
The clinic sees approximately 400 parents and babies per month and is open seven days a week. These extended weekend hours are an added benefit for the community and new parents.
“We asked a parent to bring their baby for a weekend newborn visit, when sometimes other clinics don’t have an offer. Our nurses were able to detect high albumin/globulin levels – which are able to diagnose jaundice – and get them treated in hospital early on. The baby had a very good outcome since we were able to detect and manage the jaundice immediately,” says Shanna Van Horn, manager of obstetrical services at Providence Everett and the Maternal Fetal Medical Clinic.
The high standard of care offered by the clinic is due to the care and special licensing of all lactation consultants, all of whom are registered nurses certified by the International Board-Certified Lactation Consultant, which is the highest certification and the only reference in lactation recognized internationally.
Providence Post-Partum and Lactation Clinic was the state’s first milk depot and opened in 2012. In January 2021, Providence Regional Medical Center Everett also became a Northwest Mothers milk depot site Milk Bank.
The clinic also offers telephone consultations, a service that has proven timely and helpful during the COVID-19 pandemic. The clinic also offers feeding support for various feeding options outside of breastfeeding.
“Having a new baby is such an exciting time, and we want parents to know we’re here to help and support them through their journey,” says Van Horn. Learn more about Providence Postpartum and Breastfeeding Clinic hereor call (425) 303-6545.
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