Contact: Jamie Leszczynski
New Lactation Room Remodeled at Oswego Hospital
As one of the fastest-growing segments of the U.S. labor force, the contributions of working mothers are vital to a strong economy. Yet working mothers can also struggle to balance their career and work demands with reproductive plans and caregiving. As the largest healthcare system in Oswego County, Oswego Health certainly understands the benefits of and supports an employee’s decision to breastfeed and has made recent accommodations in the workplace, thanks to the support from Norma and Jeff Barnes, the Children’s Board of Oswego, and Oswego County OBGYN.
Oswego Health has always had a designated lactation room at Oswego Hospital to allow employees to pump while at work, however, it needed a little remodeling and thanks to Director of Women’s Services, Jessica Leaf, RN, and the Oswego Health Foundation, support for the project was received from Norma and Jeff Barnes, the Children’s Board of Oswego and Oswego County OBGYN to offer a more holistic environment for staff. Soon, the remodeled room will accommodate breastfeeding classes and one-on-one sessions for new mothers.
“I look back fondly at the support that I was personally given from some of the staff at the Oswego Hospital who helped and supported me as I breastfed my own children,” stated Norma Barnes. “It is an honor for my husband and me to offer some help to new moms, or employees of the hospital, who need a safe, loving, and comfortable place to be able to provide their babies with what they need. Also, as co-president of the Oswego Children’s Board, I am happy to report that our members are very thankful that this lactation room is being developed and that we are pleased to provide additional financial support so that babies and moms will have a comfortable space to use in the future.”
Breastfeeding has many health benefits for both moms and babies. For mothers, breastfeeding reduces their risk of ovarian cancer, breast cancer, type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.1 For babies, the American Association of Pediatrics recommends that all babies be exclusively breastfed for the first six months and that breastfeeding continues after other foods are introduced for at least the first year.2 This can help prevent infections in babies (like respiratory infections, diarrhea, and ear infections), and can even improve a baby’s survival.
“Our practice and providers are proud to support this initiative as we are strong advocates for breastfeeding,” shared Practice Manager at Oswego County OBGYN, Daniel Mather. “We are happy to be able to help new moms and Oswego Health Employees have an inviting and comfortable space to encourage continued breastfeeding success.”
The newly remodeled lactation room at Oswego Hospital is located right on the Maternity Floor and offers a private and soothing atmosphere, furnished with a comfortable chair, mini-fridge, and Bluetooth speaker.
“Figuring out the logistics of pumping at work can be challenging and I am so happy with the remodeled space as this environment not only provides our staff with a relaxing, proper lacation room here at Oswego Hospital, but we’ll be able to offer the space to our patients as well,” shared Jessica Leaf, RN, Director of Women’s Services at Oswego Health.
- Ip S, Chung M, Raman G, et. al. Breastfeeding and maternal and infant health outcomes in developed countries. Evid Rep Technol Assess (Full Rep.). 2007 (153): 1-186.
- World Health Organization (WHO). http://www.who.int/maternal_child_adolescent/topics/newborn/nutrition/breastfeeding/en/