Mothers who breastfeed their babies give them a healthy start in the world. During and after your hospital stay, our nursing staff and lactation consultants provide you with the support you need to breastfeed your newborn.
UVA leads the way in offering support to newly breastfeeding mothers:
- UVA is one of only 12 hospitals recognized by the Virginia Department of Health for its support to breastfeeding moms.
- In 2014, a federal survey ranked UVA in the top 5% of hospitals for our support of breastfeeding.
- In 2015, UVA Children’s Hospital earned an international award for its support of breastfeeding mothers.
The Breastfeeding Program at UVA
Our award-winning breastfeeding program encourages and teaches you how to give your child the most healthy start possible. View breastfeeding program transcript.
Much of our success comes from policies and procedures put in place as part of our work to earn the international Baby-Friendly designation. To this end:
- All babies are put skin-to-skin with their mother immediately after birth.
- Babies sleep in the same room as their mothers at all times.
- All staff have been trained to support breastfeeding mothers, even in the NICU.
- Lactation consultants visit new mothers regularly.
- We work to get your newborn breastfeeding within an hour of birth.
Preparing to Breastfeed?
Sign up for a free breastfeeding class.
Get support over the phone or see a lactation consultant in the clinic at one of our two locations:
Breastfeeding Issues We Support
- Milk intake and supply
- Breast refusal
- Nipple confusion
- Nursing and medications
- Nipple soreness and breast pain
- Plugged ducts
- Engorgement and oversupply
- Tongue tie
- Baby's slow weight gain
- Baby refusing a bottle
- Pumping and breastfeeding when returning to work/school
If you want to learn more or find encouragement, you can:
- Meet other mothers, get advice at a La Leche League meeting in Charlottesville
- Find supplies, peer counselors, more from Women Infant and Children (WIC)
- Ask your questions by calling the National Breastfeeding Helpline
- Read articles, get book recommendations, more at KellyMom
- Find an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant
Breast Pumps & Breastfeeding Supplies
The Affordable Healthcare Act requires insurance companies to provide breast pumps to mothers who want one. Talk with a provider or lactation consultant about what kind of pump will work for you. Then call your insurance company to find out what’s covered.
You can buy pumps, flanges, breast pads, milk storage bags and other breastfeeding supplies at the UVA Gift Shop, located at University Hospital.