Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

New Mentorship Program in Phoenix Aims to Help Native Women Reclaim Breastfeeding

 

March 10, 2021

Kim Moore‐Salas (right), a lactation consultant and citizen of the Navajo Nation, is the founder of a new lactation mentorship program at Valleywise Health Medical Center in Phoenix, which hopes to bring clinical lactation skills to underserved communities. (Photo via the Valleywise Health Facebook page)

PHOENIX, Ariz. - Breastfeeding is a biological right, with innumerable benefits for babies including reduced rates of heart conditions, diabetes, food sensitivity and obesity - but Native mothers don't have the same access to lactation consultancy as their white counterparts.

That's due, in part, to a lack of diversity among lactation care providers. A 2019 survey conducted by the United States Lactation Consultant Association found that about 80 percent of certified lactation consultants are white, compared to the roughly 11 percent who are American Indian or Alaska Native.

"I've had families tell me they specifically requested Native American-based services or somebody that can kind of relate in medicine," Breastfeeding Counselor Daili Lister (Navajo and Hopi) told Native News Online. Lister began doing home visits for a local nonprofit serving predominantly Navajo women about five years ago, but is now in the process of becoming an International Board‐Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC), the highest credential in the field of lactation.

https://nativenewsonline.net/health/new-mentorship-program-in-phoenix-aims-to-help-native-women-reclaim-breastfeeding

 

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