Five new lactation consultants are now on board at JPS, adding breastfeeding support to the line-up of outpatient services for new moms. They started visiting community health centers this week — World Breastfeeding Week — getting acquainted with the nine clinics where they will see patients.
The lactation consultants will be backed up by six new community care partners, who will make home visits, helping new moms navigate around potential breastfeeding deterrents. The new Community Lactation Team is a DSRIP project, federally funded by the state's Medicaid 1115 Waiver to improve healthcare delivery and population health.
Breast milk contains hormones and antibodies that help keep babies healthy. Research has found that breastfed babies have lower risk of asthma, eczema, childhood leukemia, ear and respiratory infections, obesity and Type 2 diabetes, and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS.)
A sizable study published in Pediatrics concluded that promoting breastfeeding has the potential to prevent more than 700 post-neonatal deaths every year in the United States — a top priority for JPS, which is committed to reducing Tarrant County’s historically high infant mortality rate.