Frequently Asked Questions
What kinds of breastfeeding problems can you help me with?
A common issue that I address is nipple pain, which can have many causes. Other problems I help to solve include: difficulty latching-on, supply issues, tongue-tie, plugged ducts/mastitis, back to work transition, pumping concerns, bottle feeding, weaning, and much more. A brief phone conversation precedes any consultation so that we can assess your needs.
What is an IBCLC?
An International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC) acquires extensive clinical experience for certification, has passed a board exam, and must re-certify every five years. As the term “lactation consultant” is not legally protected, anyone can use that term to describe herself. Only with the IBCLC credential are you assured a baseline level of education and experience. To verify that your lactation consultant is an IBCLC, you can search this directory.
What should I expect during a lactation consultation?
Most consultations last about 1.5 hours and start with taking a full history (general health, pregnancy, birth, breastfeeding experience thus far), and may include observation of breastfeeding, adjustments to positioning and latch as needed, a breast exam, weighing your baby, an oral exam of your baby, observation of pumping, observation of and assistance with alternative feeding methods (bottle, eg), answering questions, etc.
How is your fee determined?
My fee includes phone and email follow-up, research as needed, a doctor’s report, a superbill to submit to insurance if needed, and documentation for your chart, all in addition to the hours I spend with you during the consultation.
Will my insurance cover your services?
Here is a good guide to getting insurance coverage for lactation consultations--your right under the Affordable Care Act. I am currently contracted as an in-network provider with AETNA insurance. Most AETNA plans cover six lactation visits per calendar year with no out of pocket cost to you. I only offer office visits for AETNA participants. During this time of social distancing, AETNA is covering Telehealth services.
If you have an AETNA PPO plan and you have confirmed your lactation benefit, call me directly to book an appointment. If you have an AETNA HMO plan, you must get a referral from your primary care doctor using my NPI number (1083988810) before I can see you.
For all other insurance plans I provide a superbill for you to submit to your insurance company for reimbursement. Payment in full (cash or check preferred, visa/mc ok) is due at the time of service. I cannot guarantee reimbursement amounts, as insurance company practices vary widely. I encourage you to contact your insurance provider directly to find out what the coverage limitations are for your specific plan.
How should I prepare for a consultation?
If at all possible, try to feed the baby 2 hours before my scheduled arrival time. Ideally, we will have some time to discuss your history and breastfeeding goals, weigh the baby, etc. before your baby is ready to feed. I encourage you to bring one supportive adult (husband, partner, relative) with you to your office visit.
Do you offer rental breast pumps?
I do not provide pump rentals at this time. There are multiple retail locations in Los Angeles where a high-quality pump can be rented if necessary and I can help you locate one.