Introducing Medela Family, With More Resources for Breastfeeding Moms
Jenny Murray, BSN, RN / January 2021
Resources for Breastfeeding Moms are More Important Than Ever
My niece, Harleigh, was born in September. My sister-in-law, Carrie, felt alone much of her pregnancy – like many moms. My brother was not able to join her for doctor appointments, she could not celebrate a baby shower in the “traditional way”, my 5-year-old niece was tugging at her mom’s shirt much of the day wanting to go to a friend’s house, and the list goes on and on. She most definitely was working to protect my 5-year-old niece from the pandemic, but her pregnancy weighed heavily. How would COVID harm her, harm her pregnancy, or harm her unborn baby if she were to “test positive”?
Many moms are ridden with anxiety about the upcoming birth of their precious little one. Add a pandemic to that equation and it seems all is amplified.
So, why am I writing my story? As a clinician and (proud) aunt, I’ve seen both sides of many of the intricate, “behind the scenes” details, including the stress and strain experienced first-hand by moms working through the pandemic and motherhood. I can’t imagine any mom doing this alone, though significant numbers of parents can and do each year.
I remember speaking to Carrie about the Medela Family program. She was not a first-time mom, but Harleigh was her first experience with breastfeeding. She had multiple risk factors that set her up for delayed lactogenesis. She had what we as clinicians would call “typical questions” and she also had questions that required more in-depth discussions. See, every mom has their own personal goals. Depending on what those goals are and the support they have (including clinicians, family and friends), sometimes their breastfeeding goals can seem overwhelming and unachievable. With an answer to every question at the touch of your fingertips by way of Google, you may or may not be receiving research-based education, including quality resources and tools that help a mother walk through what could very well be her most defining moment as a mother or her most guilt-ridden and “what should have been” moment as a mother.
Moms have questions. What’s new, right? It was tough before, but tougher now to help moms feel confident and comfortable about the many decisions they have to make for themselves and their newborn miracle. We know that many moms turn to the internet. We know moms’ stays are limited in the hospital due to COVID-19, so there is less time for education. Clinicians are exhausted, and rightly so. This year you have endured what no other clinician has ever had to endure.
As a former clinician myself, I know the importance of trusted resources. We all want what is best for our patients and their families, but there is only so much you can do in the limited time you have and with many barriers in between now, due to the pandemic.
Medela listened to clinicians like yourself and what we heard over and over is: “We need patient education!” You spoke, we listened, and we enhanced our research-based breastfeeding education through an incredible digital resource that my sister-in-law used throughout her pregnancy and still today.
Medela, as the breast pump brand most recommended by physicians, chosen first by moms and used in most hospitals*, offers a complete, stage-based, and fully digital pregnancy and breastfeeding program called Medela Family.
Learn About Medela Family and How it Can Help
What is Medela Family?
It is a stage-based program designed completely around moms’ pregnancy and breastfeeding journey to help her prepare for breastfeeding, educate herself on challenges and risk factors ahead of time, and help her to meet her goals – which, in turn, will help improve the U.S. breastfeeding initiation and duration rates.
What is the cost?
It is FREE!
When can a mom sign up for Medela Family?
As early as 8 weeks into her pregnancy.
Why so early?
This empowers Mom to make informed decisions about her breastfeeding journey and educate herself on the benefits, common challenges and situations, risk factors, and other important information ahead of time, so she is best prepared.
Content provided is based on her expected due date, so Medela can ensure she is receiving the most relevant information designed around where exactly she is in her prenatal or postnatal journey.
How long does the Medela Family program continue postnatally?
Moms will continue to receive education and resources up to 2 years postnatally, but she can choose to unsubscribe at any time if the information is no longer relevant (i.e. if she decides to wean).
Is the information specific to her baby’s age?
Absolutely. When a mom signs up for the Medela Family program, she will create a profile that includes her baby’s estimated due date. If she signs up after her baby is born, she can add her baby’s actual birthdate. This ensures that all content provided is most relevant for exactly where she is in her journey.
What types of contents, resources, and tools are available that will help moms prepare for, initiate, and maintain a strong breast milk feeding relationship?
- Helpful resources like breast shield sizing guides and safe breast milk storage guidelines
- New Concierge service (preferred distributor partners are seamlessly included in mom’s registration process to qualify and fulfill her insurance-covered breast pump order)
- Content, resources, and tools completely developed around critical moments in her pregnancy, beginning at 8 weeks prenatally and continuing 2 years postnatal
- Medela’s Breastfeeding University
- Clinician-reviewed content around nursing and pumping
- Opportunities to participate as beta testers to test and try new Medela products first
When should I offer this resource to a mom?
There are many different opportunities depending on where you practice. Do you work in an OB or PEDI office, in antepartum, in L&D, in the newborn nursery, NICU, or on postpartum? If so, you can provide Mom with any of the links below to get signed up.
Is live lactation support a part of this program?
Medela Family does not include a live lactation support discount or offer for members. Medela still offers Ask the LC, which offers one-time free email responses to lactation-focused questions answered by on-staff experts. We are also committed to providing lactation support through education in our great mom-focused content, which can all be found at https://www.medela.us/breastfeeding/articles.
How does a mom sign up for Medela Family?
Sign up for free at medela.us/breastfeeding/medela-family! Moms may also opt-in to join Medela Family when downloading our intuitive pregnancy and breastfeeding tracker app or when registering their breast pump.
Fast-forward to today and my sweet niece is a beautiful, healthy 4-month-old. She’s exclusively breastfed with a lot of determination, commitment, and work on my sister-in-law’s part. She has climbed many mountains. She empowered herself with education during her pregnancy, learned additional tips and tricks from education she received at each stage, and became progressively confident. She is proudly meeting her goals today.
As they say: “When momma’s happy, everybody’s happy!”
*IQVIA ProVoice Survey; September 2019 – August 2020. Medela 2018 U.S. Breast Milk Feeding Report. Medela 2017 Managed Markets Pulse Study.
About the Author
Jenny Murray, BSN, RN, began her career 18 years ago as a neonatal nurse in neonatal intensive care. She has since served in a variety of nursing leadership roles within the NICU. Her experience in those roles has driven her love for education and research, especially educating and supporting clinicians in the advancing, innovative world of neonatology. Jenny currently works as a Clinical NICU Specialist for Medela LLC.