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Lactation Services at Pediatric Practices
I am looking for a local (easy bay) pediatric office that
has lactation services, preferably that are covered by
health insurance (we have Blue Shield). I know there are
many lactation consultants out there, but I am looking for
someone who is skilled and has a lot of experience who I
could access at my visits to the ped.
We had a great experience with the lactation consultant at
Pediatrics. Georganne Walker splits her time between the Oakland and
Alameda office locations, and we found her to be extremely
knowledgeable and patient when we were struggling. Can not recommend
her enough! Cut and paste for her bio:
We started going to the Pediatric Medical Group in Berkeley after the
recent birth of our baby. Dr. Robin Meezan is great as are the other
doctors in the practice (of the ones that we have met so far). They
have a lactation consultant that you can make appts with after any of
your child's dr. appointments. So helpful and timesaving!
My pediatric office, Bayside Medical Group
in Oakland, has a lactation
consultant. I did see her once and all I had to pay was my regular
co-pay. Her first name is Amrit and she was helpful. Sorry, I cant
remember her last name but if you call the office they will know who
you mean. The office is at 3100 Telegraph Ave and the number is
452-5231. The practice has many doctors.
My two children are patients at Bayside Medical, where we
get excellent pediatric care. We've also worked with an
amazing lactation consultant there, Amrit Khalsa, as I had
trouble with painful breastfeeding in the beginning. She was
fantastic, and took the time to help me figure out what was
going on with my baby's latch, what we needed to change, and
also just reassured me and provided indispensable support
when it seemed so hard. I don't know what i would have done
without her, truly, in those first 6 weeks. I know that
Bayside is now providing lactation services that are covered
by insurance. Run, do not walk, and call Rebecca Dycus at
Bayside at 510.452.5231 to make an appointment with Amrit.
You don't have to be a current patient there. Rebecca will
look into your eligibility for benefits and work with you on
insurance info. You can also just call and leave a message
for Amrit there. Good luck! here's to nursing!
Pediatric Medical Group
on Telegraph in South Berkeley has an excellent
lactation consultant, Joanne Rucker. She's on staff and has always been
available to me when I've needed her, setting aside time at the end of
a pediatric visits or responding to my calls promptly. I had a lot of
fears/challenges when nursing my first child, who was premature so
there were latching issues. Joanne took a real interest in me and my
daughter and spent considerable time advising me and guiding me as I
nursed. PMG generally is excellent. I've always been able to get
same-day appointments with our doctor, Ralph Berberich. On occasion
Robin Meezan has treated my kids. She's awesome too. Anon
I am a pediatrician at Primary Pediatrcs. We have a great Lactation Consultant
who is also a pediatric nurse practitioner at our practice. Her name is
Georganne Walker. She sees patients in both our Alameda and Oakland offices.
She also works at Alta Bates and runs the breastfeeding support group there.
The best thing about having her as one of our clinicians, is that she is covered
by most insurances. Check out our website: www.primarypediatric.com or call
the office for any questions!
Laura Balestreri, MD
Amrit Khalsa is an experienced lactation consultant who
works with us at Bayside Medical Group in the Oakland office
(3100 Telegraph, 510-452-5231). Her services are generally
covered by insurance. She is a loving, positive, and
reassuring presence,and her skills at helping with
breastfeeding are just amazing. Some of the mothers in my
practice who have seen her for help with breastfeeding were
already experienced themselves (having taught breastfeeding
to others or breastfed previous children) and still felt
that she made a huge difference in their ability to
breastfeed comfortably and successfully. I highly recommend
her. Katya Gerwein, MD
Lactation Consultant who can do home-visits
I would love to have some recommendations for a lactation
consultant who will do home-visits. I am due in a month and
due to some previous surgery may have some trouble
breastfeeding, and I'd like to have someone come and check
on me at home. I am with Kaiser and they do have lactation
consultants, but I have to drive myself over to the clinic
to see them, and I'd prefer to have someone come to my home
in Alameda. I would especially like someone who is
experienced in breastfeeding after breast surgery. I looked
on the database on BPN and the latest recommendations were
from 2008. Just wondering if I can get some more recent ones.
For home lactation visits, I highly recommend Julia
Denniston and Amrit Khalsa. If you are able to go to Janaki
Costello in her office in Albany, she is also excellent. a
Katie DaMota is an IBCLC who makes home visits. milksupport.com.
bfar.org is an excellent website for women
who have had breast surgeries, as are lowmilksupply.org and
mobimotherhood.org (not that you will necessarily have low
supply - just as references). ''Motherfood'' by Hilary
Jacobson is a wonderful book of foods and recipes that women
around the world have used to support and increase their
milk supplies. You might consider having an appointment now
in order to have a plan in place as soon as you give birth.
Also - I am an IBCLC candidate and have just started a free,
drop-in breastfeeding support group in Alameda Monday
mornings at 9:30 at Immanuel Lutheran, Santa Clara &
Chestnut. This group is for anyone along the path: pregnant, working
on nursing, nursing. Feel free to email
with any questions.
Good luck! peggy
She doesn't do home visits, but Janaki Costello is the be
all and end all of all lactation consultants. I'm sure
you'll get a lot of recommendations for her. She is
seriously the best in the area (and beyond). I worked with
her when I was in your boat, and I'm happy to talk with you
as well. First child - very difficult time, little milk,
hard to latch, had to supplement, etc. Second - relatively
easy, plenty of milk,no supplementing. I think it's a
combination of the baby and your breasts, so whatever
happens, know that you're baby will be fabulous and fine
(both of mine are thriving and happy). If you want to talk
supplements, etc. I'm happy to. Ask the moderator for my
info. Been There
Re: Doula that specializes in breastfeeding?
I can't help much with a doula, but as far as breastfeeding
goes, you want Anne Hauss. I was never able to breastfeed
our first child, despite countless groups and individual
help by lactation consultants. With our second child, I was
lucky enough to have Anne visit at the hospital. She not
just knows exactly how to work around every possible
problem, she also makes sure that the mother knows what she
is doing when Anne is not around. Meaning after she
demonstrates how to get the baby to latch on, she takes the
baby off and makes the mom try until she got it. This point
was crucial for me, I had never a problem to have the
various lactation consultants get our first to latch on, I
just couldn't do it myself when they weren't around. I don't
really know what's wrong with my nipples (something along
the lines of extremely sensitive), but I was having
difficulties breastfeeding for many months, and Anne worked
with me until I had the technique down and was able to latch
the baby on by myself at home. I went through a lot of pain
and a few times came close to giving up but thanks to Anne,
ultimately our daughter never had a bottle. I don't have her
current phone number, but you can get in touch with her
through the Alta Bates breastfeeding program. She runs
groups through Alta Bates and is also available for
Looking for a good lactation consultant ... LE
Lactation consultant: if you have Kaiser for either yourself or
your baby, you have lactation consultants available at the
pediatric clinics--for free! We're international board certified
lactation consultants (IBCLC)as well as RNs. You can self-refer
(don't need a doctor referral).
In Oakland, call 752-7557; Richmond 307-2514; Pinole 243-4215.
Wishing you comfortable, confident breastfeeding-
If you want the ''goddess of lactation consultants'' (as she
was referred to to me), call Janaki Costello in Albany. She
was absolutely wonderful with me and my baby in every way: warm,
attentive, non-blaming, understanding, and highly skilled.
Janaki Costello: 510-525-1155
Janaki Costello is the best. Find her info on her website:
I highly recommend Katie Bowman DaMota
Kaiser lactation consultants
Any recommendations on which Kaiser lactation consultants you've found
helpful for breastfeeding? I know that it's free to see them in the clinic as much
as you need.
My son and I saw Paulette Avery at Kaiser Oakland last
fall, and she was terrific. She was very thorough when
trying to find reasons for a low supply and very
encouraging throughout the whole process. She wasn't
available one day and I saw another RN (last name
Lunsford), who was extremely helpful as well.
Try Susan Scholl (I think that is how its spelled). I was
having a rough time with lactation and she was so gentle,
open minded and mama focused that she got me out of my
inadequate feelings and hopelessness. After a few weeks
of regular weekly appointments, my stubborn and difficult
baby was nursing normally by about 3 months and I'm just
now weaning him at age 2.
I cannot recommend Pat Ross, at Kaiser Walnut Creek, highly enough. She
helped me diagnose and remedy severe pain when I was nursing my first baby
five years ago; everyone else said the latch looked fine so nothing was wrong,
but Pat doggedly got to the bottom of the problem. Without her help I would
have quit--instead, my son and I went on to nurse for three years. Recently I
had another baby, and some similar problems cropped up. Pat spent a couple of
sessions with me making sure we had the latch right and helping me out. She is
unbelievably knowledgeable, kind, caring and professional. I live in Berkeley, but
the drive is worth it. Her number is 925-295-4368.
Seeking highly experienced lactation consultant
I am currently expecting my 2nd child and need to find a
highly experienced lactation consultant who has worked with
women with inverted nipples. With my first baby, I saw
three different lactation consultants who never encountered
this, and could only give me a lot of theory and stumped
expressions when nothing worked. Rather than give up
without even trying with baby #2, I'm hoping to find someone
I can work with before the birth, while I am in the
hospital, and in the weeks following birth to find a way to
breastfeed. Thanks in advance for your input.
Janaki Costello really helped me. My nippes were flat, not
inverted, but really, I think she can do anything. She was
the 3rd lactation consultant I saw and really got it
Janaki Costello is one of the best lactation consultants in
the area. Her number is 510-525-1155. She is located in Albany.
I don't know about her experience with inverted nipples
specifically, but in general I would highly recommend
Janaki Costello in Albany
has 30+ years of experience in breastfeeding support. I
found her tremendously helpful and supportive when I was
having nursing problems early on. Good luck!!
I just wanted to recommend the Kaiser Richmond lactation
Department. They are just wonderful, particularly Susan
I planned on breastfeeding but never realized how for some
it can be a little challenging. I had great help at the
hospital, was discharged and once home, felt really lost
and concerned I was feeding my son more formula than
breastmilk. Susan was very patient, kind, and reassuring
in her approach. She spent a good deal of time making
sure I was comfortable with the positions she suggested.
She proposed different things to use, pumps, etc... I
saw her weekly for the first month and felt so much more
comfortable with breastfeeding.
That support continued through the initial months as well
as when I returned to work and was finding pumping at work
a great challenge. Susan was there again offering her
suggestions and recommendations that made it all okay.
She continued holding my hand when I finally weaned my son
after 13 months of breastfeeding.
I found the Kaiser Richmond Lactation Dept invaluable to
me and my son's first year. Feel free to contact me if
you have any questions.
My 5 week old baby girl and I have had a really tough time with
breastfeeding. I've gone to see the Lactation Consultant at
Kaiser in Vaccaville 6 times now. She's been very helpful, and
we seem to get baby Kayla to suck and latch right every time
I'm there at the doctor's office but a couple feedings after we
get home she starts sucking wrong again and I'm in excruciating
pain. On Wednesday when I went to see Alice (the Lactation
Consultant) I had a bleeding nipple and she had me feed Kayla
on one breast (that was not bleeding) and pump the injured
breast and feed her with a bottle. Today (Friday), I went back
to see Alice and since my nipple had healed we tried again and
got her to suck and latch on correctly. After the 2nd feeding
at home I was in pain again. I'm following all the right
latching techniques and don't know what else to do anymore.
Alice told me to try finger feeding her the pumped breastmilk
if I have problems over the weekend but I can't get Kayla to do
the finger feeding either. I'm in desperate need for help and
will pay a Lactation Consultant to come to my home and help me
over the weekend. Does anyone know of someone that's available
over the weekend? I live in Fairfield but I'm also willing to
come to the Bay Area if needed.
We have a newborn (1 week old) and he sucks like a Hoover
vaccuum cleaner. It's KILLING my nipples! He's our 3rd baby, so
I know the difference. One of my nipples also bled and the
other was severely cracked. Both became infected a few days ago
and I ended up in the ER and am now on antibiotics.
My lactation consultant gave me great advice. Try nipple
shields! I used them for our first child as well and actually
ended up nursing her with nipple shields until she was 3
months. After that I switched her to nursing directly on me.
They work wonderfully. I still let my son nurse on me directly
every other day or so, but I am slowly letting my nipples get
used to the strength of his sucking without him doing damage to
them. We still have latching problems as well, but the nipple
shield allows me to work on it without getting stressed out or
being in more pain.
I have used Kay Goodyear as a lactation consultant in the past.
She lives in Martinez. I'm not sure if she'll go to Fairfield,
but she came to our home when we lived in Benicia. Her ph# is
925.313.8986. I received help
from Catherine Mulcahy this time around; she heads the La Leche
League in the Benicia/Vallejo area. Her ph # is 707.644.3599.
I wish you much success with this!
Nipple Shield Fan
I strongly recommend Julia Denniston. You can reach her at 925
683 1933. She was recommended to me by our pediatrician. Not
only did she come to my home to help on a weekend, if i recall
correctly, it was a major holiday weekend, too, when almost all
the other consultants that we called were unavailable. I forget
how much it cost but whatever it was, it was the best money we
nursing like a champion now
Can anybody recommend a doula & lactation consultant for a first time mom? I'll be
having my baby in May and would like to have the support of a lactation consultant in
addition to a doula. I had breast cancer 10 years ago and I'm not sure if I will be
able to manage breastfeeding (although I'd love to try). So far I only have found
women with expertise in one of the areas, not both, and Janaki unfortunately is booked
as a doula around my due date.
I don't she's a doula but just in case I thought I'd tell you about an
amazing lactation consultant that we found by accident at Alta Bates.
After a parade of nurses and other consultants streaming through my
room with different advice for four days, Ann Haus, was a dream. She
focused on me (more than the baby, who was fine as opposed to me who
was a wreck!) and quickly figured out a plan that worked for me. Then,
we hired her to come to our house after the baby was born. In the end,
I decided not to breast feed but her support and great ideas helped a
really difficult decision to be okay. You can find her through Alta
Bates at (510) 204-7701.
thrilled with ann
Carol Shattuck-Rice was our post-partum doula, and she works with
Janaki. While she isn't technically a Lactation Consultant, she saved
us with the breastfeeding -- she really has a knack for seeing what's
going on and helped us get it going well! We would highly recommend her
- she's smart, kind, thoughtful, practical and really helpful!
I would highly reccomend Ann Haus as a lacatation consultant. In fact,
the breast feeding support group at Alta Bates is a wonderful service.
One on one lactation consultants can be very expensive and through the
breast feeding support group you can get advice from Ann or Michelle (who
is also wonderful but I don't know her last name) for free the frist time
and then $10 for other visits to the group. (It's also nice just to see
other mom's struggling with similar issues.) My daughter is turning 1 and
Ann still answered emails from me without charge last month when it
looking like maybe my daughter was self weaning. I believe that for a
higher fee you can also get one-on-one sessions with Ann. I'm not sure if
Ann is also a doula.
Best of luck to you!
thank you Ann!
I am a new mom of four week old twins. I am looking for recommendations for a
lactation consultant who has experience with twins. My milk supply is good
and the babies are getting all breast milk from a bottle, but, the babies
were 5 weeks early and are still not latching well as their mouths are small
and I have flat nipples. I really want to be able to get the babies to the
breast and, though I am happy I am able to pump so much, I am worried that
they will never really get the hang of breast feeding. Any recommendations
very much appreciated!
I used go to the Twins by The Bay new parents support group and there were several moms
who had the same problem. They highly recommened the Medela Nipple Shield which is
geared to helping w/ latching on. Here's a link to their website:
I've seen the nipple shields at Target, so they aren't hard to find.
mama of twins
Hello new twin mama...I would like to recommend a couple of lactation consultants.
Denise Barkasy is wonderful 925-945-7100 and Tricia Soliz (a mother of twins herself) at
Founder, DoubleTalk & Babies2Sleep
and a mother of twins!
i would appreciate recs for a lactation consultant who is knowledgeable about
breastfeeding after reduction surgery (bfar.) i also have no idea how much they
charge, assuming it's pricey, a sliding scale would be helpful. in addition, if
anyone has information about renting a hospital grade pump and/or purchasing a
medela supplemental nursing system or lact-aid, i'd appreciate that, too.
hoping to breastfeed
I highly recommend Janaki Costello as a lactation consultant. She is located in
Albany and her phone number is 510-525-1155. I personally found her helpful, and
have heard recommendations for her from many other people.
I am an adoptive mom who breastfed my son from birth, initially using a supplementer
and eventually developing a full milk supply. I found it a highly rewarding
experience, for both my son and myself, and well worth the extra challenges
involved. The experience of breastfeeding with a supplementer due to breast
reduction surgery is similar to adoptive breastfeeding, although there are some
I also had a breast reduction and saw a wonderful lactation
consultant in Albany. Her name is Janaki Costello. She worked
with me to make a plan to increase production, and we kept in
touch via phone to monitor how things were going. She is very
warm, experienced, and knowledgeable and I recommend her highly!
Her office is on San Pablo, not too far from Solano. Her phone
number is 525-1155. She also sells supplemental nursing systems.
As far as renting a pump, I rented a top-of-the-line one (Medela
Symphony) from Alta Bates. Best of luck!
Hi - Pat Ross in Walnut Creek Kaiser is amazing. Also Apria Healthcare has hospital
grade pumps you can rent.
For a lactation consultant, I would add my rave reviews to those
already listed on BPN for Janaki Costello, in Albany at
510-525-1155. I don't know if she has experience with BFAR, but
I'm sure she'd tell you whether she does.
As for pumps, I have a Medela Pump In Style but I rented the
hospital grade Symphony from the breast feeding office at Alta
Bates, and I find it far superior. It is quieter, much more
comfortable (it feels like it's sucking less hard), while at the
same time actually pumps more milk. The downside of the Symphony
(and perhaps all the hospital grade ones) is that it is much more
cumbersome to tote with you. (Pump In Style is great for that.)
You might want to start with the rental, since it's less money
to start out than buying one. If you haven't had the baby yet,
and you deliver at a hospital, you can try out whatever pump
they have there. Also, if you do deliver at Alta Bates, check out
the Breast Feeding Office -- they have pumps to rent and
lactation consultants. The lactation consultants in the
hospital might know enough about BFAR to get you started so you
won't have to pay for a private one.
Once you have the baby, if you're needing more help, I think
paying for a visit with Janaki, while pricey (though she may
slide for you), may be a good deal. She is SO NICE. She has
given me (free) advice over the phone NUMEROUS times since our
initial consultation about all kinds of new questions. She
remembers me and is eager to hear how things are going.
A word of caution on the lactation support group at Alta Bates....it's cheap
($9/session) and convenient, but the lactation consultants are obsessed with
ounces. They weigh babies before and after a feeding, and make moms feel
awful if the baby is not eating the right number of ounces at each feeding
and exactly on the growth curve. The health educators make you feel guilty in
a sweet, singsongy voice, and recommend formula if you're off the growth
curve. So much for lactation support.
My advice on the Alta Bates ''support'' group - let your doctor worry about
the weight, and skip the weighing at the support group and focus on the
support and latching techinques.
I'm looking for a lactation consultant who has experience working
with women with very large, pendulous breasts. I'm having
problems finding a comfortable position to breastfeed my baby,
avoiding crushing her, and having her latch and keep her latch,
as my breasts are bigger and heavier than she is. Thanks!
Janaki Costello was a life-saver when we were struggling with
breastfeeding our son. Though our issues were different than
yours, you might just want to call her and ask her if she can
help you. She is excellent all-around and can be reached at her
office at 525-1155.
janaki costello - she did wonders for a friend in the same situation.
Janaki Costello is an absolutely superb lactation consultant. I
did not see her for your particular problem, but I am sure she
would be very helpful to you. I had many breastfeeding problems
and saw a number of lactation consultants, and Janaki was by far
the best. She's smart, practical, friendly, intuitive, generous
with her time, and very knowledgeable. Her office is in Albany
near Solano; her number is 525-1155.
Hi- Saw your post about having problems keeping your baby
latched on. I have nursed two children for the past 4 years.
I find that I must hold the breast while the baby is nursing,
lifting it slightly. This makes a huge difference in keeping
the milk flowing. Once you get used to it, you will find
holding the breast is much easier than not, and the baby will
nurse longer. I also want to suggest, as I always do, that you
learn to nurse lying down. This is an absolute must for all
nursing moms. If lying on your right side, you would extend
your right arm, the baby would lie under your upper arm, and
you would use your left hand to hold your breast. Vice versa
for the left side. I can't overemphasize how important it is
to learn to nurse lying down. You will be able to nurse very
relaxed, even fall asleep with your baby easily. But you may
need to take precautions so that baby doesn't fall out of bed
later! Bed rails, moving the bed against the wall.... Check
the La Leche website, for more hints on latch, also, search
on ''breast compression'' I just found this on the web:
Good luck- you are giving your baby and yourself a wonderful
gift- hang in there!
I highly recommend Janaki Costello, located on San Pablo near
Solano. I'm sure she's in the white pages or you can find her
on the internet. I saw her after the birth of my son last year
and she was very helpful. I don't have particularly large
breasts but I know she's been doing this for a long time and
has lots of experience. Good luck!
I don't have a lactation consultant to recommend but I also have very large
pendulous breasts and had similar issues - with 2 kids. Maybe my solution can help
you. The most comfortable way for me to breastfeed my daughter is to lie on my
side on the bed and have her lie next to me but on her back. I know they always say
''tummy to tummy'' but with her on her back, she's pulled away from my breast more
and then it doesn't smother her. Also, the bed helps hold the breast in place so she
stays latched on. I use my hand to support the breast also and push and flatten the
top part of it away from my baby's nose. Finally, after she is latched on, I check to
make sure her nose is clear and if not, I shift slightly down and away from her until
it is. She doesn't seem to mind at all and is getting quite chubby so something is
working. I did the same with my older daughter. Hope this helps.
Big Boobs Too
Hello to all and especially to those with whom I had the
privilege to assit with breastfeeding challenges over the
past 20 years.
I thank you for the positive feedback.
Yes, the BayArea Lactation Center had to close due to
financial and personal reasons. I moved out of the
area to Mendocino Cty, but still return once or twice a
month to see clients in the Bay Area. Also, I still work at
Alta Bates when I come down.
I give free phone (510-541-4000) and internet advice.
Please feel free to contact me. If you need immediate
home visit assistance, I will refer you to those that I trust
and value their expertise.
Take good care,
Bonnie L. Bruce RN, IBCLC
bbruce AT pacific.net
Can anyone tell me if Kaiser covers in-home lactation
consultant visits, and if so can you also recommend one or
I had horrible problems Breastfeeding my now 6 month old son and
found the LCs at Kaiser to be really first class. As far as I
know Kaiser pays for a home health care nurse after you are
discharged from the hospital for free if it is your first.
After that you need to go to Kaiser for the appointments (I went
to Oakland.) Joanne Jasson (sp?) and Suzy (Can't remember the
last name) but there is a Sue too who is different, were the
ones that helped me the most. When my son didn't gain weight
well, they saw me for 3x/week for about a month until he was
gaining weight and all our issues were gone. They were so
helpful and amazing and I never had to use formula (although
they are open to it and non-judgemental) and I am still happily
breastfeeding more than 6 months later problem-free. They also
answer some questions via phone. They are understanding of the
fact it is hard for new moms to come in and spend lots of time
with you, however they are often running late so be prepared for
It is an amazing resource and you don't pay for visits. I
gained huge amounts of respect for Kaiser for providing this
free service while my friends with other insurance plans had to
pay $80 or more /visit with their LC.
If you want someone at home not at Kaiser I know Janaki Costello
(525-1155) makes house calls and is excellent.
Hope this helps.
I would call Kaiser Oakland and ask if Joanne Jasson can
do a home visit. If she can't - pay her a visit at Kaiser. She
has a magic nursing chair and a magical presence that
helped me get my 3.5 month old latched on after three visits.
This was after 3 months of working at it with other lactation
specialists, all in my home.
I had great success with Evelyn, a lactation consultant at Kaiser
in San Francisco. It took several visits to her office before my
multiple problems were solved, but it was worth it. She was
incredibly supportive and without her help I know I would have
given up on breastfeeding. They do not do home visits at Kaiser,
but they will spend lengthy amounts of time on the phone.
Depending on your problem, this might help, but most likely they
will want to see you nursing your baby.
Best of luck!
The lactation consultant at Kaiser Walnut Creek is great - her
name is Pat Ross. She doesn't (Kaiser doesn't) make home visits
that I know of.
To my knowledge the lactation consultants do not visit at home
(there's just the first home visit w/ in a few days of birth by
an np or lpn; she did check on the nursing, btw). That said I
really was helped by several lengthy phone conversations w/
lactation consultants at kaiser. Joanne in particular but Sue
and others whose names I don't recall. They will also see you at
their office. As many of my friends and I observed, the problem
with going there is that they focus on achieving the best
possible nursing right there at that time in their chair w/
their brest friend (the single most important nursing related
purchase I made after soothies (which I learned of from this
community)). So you can go home and feel completely incompetent
at home all over again. I'd bring a partner or friend to take
notes or even take a digital photo graph if it gets going well
while you are there. And they will spend a lot of time with you
at your appointment. I'd also go to the mommy group kaiser
sponsers. The women I met there started meeting separately and
we were passing nursing tips and nursing when we met and did
some self help.
When I was having nursing problems (with the *second* kid, what a
surprise), I found the lactation consultants at Kaiser very
helpful indeed. But I had to go to the Medical Center, they
didn't offer to come to me. This was in summer 2000.
I don't know about Kaiser but I've recently had two lactation
consultants do home visits and both were good. Tina
Benitez phone number is 639-4845. She is sick right now
so I also had Fritzi Drosten 652-1173. It is expensive but
they were both quite available for follow-up by phone and
spent a lot of time.
Does anybody where the Bay Area Lactation Center has gone? I
noticed that the office across from Alta Bates is vacant, and when I called
the phone number got no answer. They were so great when I had problems
with baby #1, and even though I'm hoping I don't have problems
with baby #2, would like to be able to contact them if needed, if they're still in business.
I hadn't noticed that they had moved/closed but you might want to try calling
Alta Bates' maternity ward's nurses desk. Bonnie Bruce has been a lactation
consultant and nurse at AB for years. They should know how to find her.
Please post the new location if you find it. I was really grateful for their
excellent help in navigating nursing after breast reduction and was hoping
for their support w/ baby # 2 due in Sept. should we need!
Unfortunately, the Bay Area Lactation Center has closed. We
just had a private breastfeeding class from Bonnie Bruce, and she told us
that she is returning to private practice, so you would need to
contact her on an an individual consultation basis.
Bonnie Bruce's number is still 510-428-0791.
She is still available for consults even though the center is
Sorry, I do not know about the Bay Area Lactation Center, but
there are a few resources still available to nursing mothers. La Leche League
has groups in Oabland, Berekeley, Alameda, Walnut Creek and others. Call the
referal line for location and phone nos of leaders closest to you.
Women's Health Center in Walnut Creek has a big staff of fabulous lactation
consultants, classes, and support groups. The new Nurture Center in Lafayette
has pump rentals, support groups and friendly people.
Hope you won't need help with baby #2, you are an old nursing
pro by now, but as each baby is different, different issues might come up.
Going to LLL meetings or other support groups could be of great help to
review and connect with people and resources.
my understanding is that the bay area lactation center is
closed permanently. if you would like a referral to a private
practice lactation consultant, who will come to your home and work with you for a
couple horus , and do follow-up, etc., i would be happy to give you some
About 1-2 months ago I went over there to look at some
furniture they were selling. Surpisingly, they are not relocating. One of the two
owners/operators was leaving the country (if my memory serves
me correctly) and the 2nd one decided to move to a different type of work.
The Bay Area Lactation Center has closed down. The Lactation
Consultant who did private consultations there is Bonnie Bruce, IBCLC, and she still
consultations at her home in Oakland (510-428-0791). Prior to closing, Yvette Webster
ran the Center) was referring customers to The Nurture Center in Lafayette. We
referrals to lactation consultants and do breast pump sales and rentals, carry
replacement parts and
nursing bras and other gear. We
can be reached at 925-283-1346 or info at nurturecenter.com
I highly recommend Bonnie Bruce from the Bay Area Lactation Center--if it
weren't for her, I would have given up! Bonnie was extremely professional,
reassuring, supportive, and most of all practical. She phoned me every day
after our meeting to see how I was doing and I still call her with questions
(my daughter is now 3 and a half months old). I called a few other lactation
consultants before I (thankfully) found Bonnie and the few I spoke with were
a little woo-woo, and frankly made me feel worse than I already felt at the
time. All is can tell you is that Bonnie is the best in my book--and I've
since spoken to many other women who went to see her and got lots of sound
advice for everything from problems with latching to going back to work.
Hope this helps.
I just wanted to add my very positive experience of Bonnie Bruce to the
recommendations already given. I had a very difficult post-partum
experience 3 and a half years ago -- breastfeeding was difficult and on top
of that I had serious medical complications. She was great in all the ways
mentioned by others. In addition, I was very appreciative of her
non-judgmental attitude about breastfeeding. Even though in the event I was
able to continue breastfeeding despite the difficulties, I felt that she
would have been fully supportive if I had decided to switch to
bottle-feeding instead. That seems to me to be very important in a
lactation consultant -- you don't want someone who is going to make you feel
bad if you're not able to carry through with it.
I would like to put in a plug for the new Bay Area Lactation Center
behind Alta Bates Hospital. While I have never done a full consultation
with them, both Bonnie and Yvette have been extremely helpful during
casual conversations while I was there to purchase Bravado nursing bras,
Avent supplies and Pump-in-Style replacement parts. They do offer
complete consultation services. It is a wonderful little store and
resource for the community. Please help support them. It would be
wonderful to see them thrive. Lisa
I highly recommend Bonnie Bruce, the co-owner of Bay Area
Lactation Center located behind Alta Bates Hospital on Regent. The number
is 209-9703 and the web site is
www.bayarealactation.com . Bonnie
is absolutely great! When I had problems she saw me on an emergency
basis. She then made several follow-up calls to check up on me and baby.
Bonnie has some 20 years as a L&D nurse about 17 years as a registered
lactation specialist. She carries a wide variety of pumps and nursing
equipment (such as pillows, tubing, supplemental feeders, tea, etc.). She
also stocks nursing bras and premie clothes. Bonnie is great! I highly
recommend her. I still drop by from time to time just to say hello!
In response to the person looking for a lactation consultant to make
house calls, I highly recommend both Bonnie Bruce and Janaki Costello
as I have used the professional services of both. Bonnie Bruce
operates Bay Area Lactation Center and is an R.N. at nearby Alta Bates
Medical Center in Berkeley.
I met Bonnie when my son was 2 weeks old because he was slow in
regaining his birth weight. His (former) pediatrician was pushing me
to supplement with formula, an action I wanted to avoid because I was
concerned about nipple confusion, and the effect of supplementing on my
milk supply. At my request the pediatrician gave me a referral to
Bonnie, whose home visit was covered by our HMO (Healthnet) after much
haggling with Alta Bates Medical Group. Bonnie was extremely thorough,
professional and reassuring and her advice was very effective. Our son
made tremendous gains in weight only 3-4 days after our initial
appointment. Bonnie was always generous with free advice and support
when I was in the neighborhood and stopped by to say hello (our son's
pediatrician is nearby).
can't say enough good things about either of these caring, professional
I can highly recommend Bonnie Bruce/Care After Birth: (510) 428-0791. Bonnie
is an RN at Alta Bates as well as a lactation consultant who does home
visits. She is knowledgeable, warm and reassuring, rents breast pumps (and
sells used pumps too). She was also savvy enough to tell me to ask my OB or
pediatrician to write a prescription for her services so that I could get
reimbursed by insurance for her visits. jen (6/99)
From: Dylyn (6/99)
I used Joanne Bergeson (not sure if that's the right spelling) and highly
recommend her. She came recommended by our pediatrician who coordinated
everything from getting in touch with her to getting her set up with Health
Net so that the visit would be covered under our insurance. Joanne is
warm, friendly and is also a labor and delivery nurse at Summit Hospital.
She came to my home the day after we got home from the hospital and was
also very helpful over the phone.
I highly recommend Janaki Costello who is an International Board
Certified Lactation Consultant who is just passionate about her work.
She has been helping nursing moms in the East Bay for years and is
caring and very experienced. Janaki can be reached at 510-525-1155.
From: Paula (6/99)
In response to the person looking for a lactation consultant to make
house calls, I highly recommend both Bonnie Bruce and Janaki Costello
as I have used the professional services of both.
Janaki Costello is also a certified Doula
and a certified Childbirth Educator who lives in El Cerrito.
Janaki was our "back-up" Doula whom we met one time before our baby was
born. My husband and I had liked her immediately! When our son's
weight began dropping at 6 weeks of age, her proximity to our home made
her a natural choice. Following her initial lengthy visit, Janaki
spent extensive amounts of time in person and on the telephone
providing free instruction, encouragement and emotional support that
helped us successfully weather a very challenging period.
Our son is now 9-1/2 months old and still nursing and growing well. I
can't say enough good things about either of these caring, professional
Janaki Costello is a wonderful lactation consultant. She can be reached at
525-1155. You can read recommendations about her doula work at the parents
website (you'll be able to get a sense of how great she is to work with).
Janaki Costello is the best there is. She can be reached at (510) 525-1155.
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