178728 Improving breastfeeding support in Medi-Cal

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Karen Farley, RD, IBCLC , California WIC Association, Sacramento, CA
Lucy Quacinella, Attorney at Law , Multiforum Advocacy Solutions, San Francisco, CA
Laurie Pennings , Dept. of Public Health, CA WIC Program, West Sacramento, CA
Low-income mothers in California have two government funded sources of support for breastfeeding, WIC and Medi-Cal. Medi-Cal is designated as the first source of support for breastpumps. Local WIC agencies differ in their services and some have supplemental grant funding for breastfeeding, but taken as a whole, state services include individual and group lactation support; clinic, home and hospital support; peer counselors, CLEs and IBCLCs; and breastpumps and supplies. Medi-Cal regulations have been inadequate for breastfeeding support or too complex a system for healthcare providers to navigate. Breastfeeding advocates asked for help to streamline the Medi-Cal regulations for improved lactation support for consultations and breastpumps. Through a partnership of the CA WIC Association, WIC, MCH. Medi-Cal staff and breastfeeding advocates steps are being taken to address issues of eligibility, benefits, provider status, and durable medical equipment. Issues pertinent to fee-for-service and managed care are included. The project will culminate with user friendly materials for breastfeeding advocates and healthcare providers to use to tap the resources in Medi-Cal for breastfeeding support.

Learning Objectives:
Identify key partners for advocating for improved lactation support in Medi-Cal. Identify key issues for providing improved lactation support in Medi-Cal. Identify challenges to providing lactation support in Medi-Cal.

Keywords: Breastfeeding, Advocacy

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am actively working in this area of breastfeeding advocacy.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.