Today I am writing about Telehealth Lactation Consults. You may also hear the term Virtual Consults. This method of support has been a part of many IBCLC’s (International Board-Certified Lactation Consultant’s) repertoire for years before the current health crisis. Recently many IBCLC’s have added this service and sought training on making this successful for our clients and families.
What is a Telehealth Consult?
A Telehealth or Virtual Consult is a consult that is conducted through HIPAA compliant, secure live video. This means I am still adhering to regulations to safeguard your privacy and medical information. A consult through video has limitations and does not replace an in-person consult and examination. This is also true if you have a Telemedicine visit with your MD.
What can I do to support you and your family through Telehealth?
What is different in a Telehealth Consult?
Please have a person available to help position the camera/computer during the consult (For those with scheduling issues, I can arrange evening consults)
Please have sufficient lighting in the room and a separate portable light/lamp that can be directly aimed at a subject
Have your camera available to take pictures/videos for later review
Telehealth consults, due to their nature, may require more follow up messaging (this is included)
IBCLC’s are a creative group of professionals. We have always utilized videos, gesticulating with our hands and using props like dolls and knitted breasts to aid us in teaching! We have adapted to Virtual Lactation. Let us be there for you and your family during this time!
Let’s keep the milk flowing, prevent problems and keep the babies/children and parents smiling on this journey! Join us online!
During this current health crisis, babies are still being born and more families may need the support of a Lactation Consultant. As a Registered Nurse and IBCLC (International Board Certified Lactation Consultant) I routinely work with babies in the NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit) and the Newborn Nursery. These babies are fragile and I take my responsibility to protect their health and your families' health very seriously. These are the precautions I take. Excepting the added pre-screen questionnaire, these are the same precautions I take on a regular basis.
Prior to your consult:
1. I screen all clients and their family for signs of an illness via a questionnaire prior to the consult. I offer a Telehealth consult for those who report symptoms and still desire a consult.
2. I will notify you of any illness in myself or my family and cancel the consult. I will either reschedule or assist you to find another IBCLC in a timely manner
3. I thoroughly clean all my supplies with approved disinfectants, including my iphone/ipad and pen before and after each consult
During your consult:
1. I wash my hands with soap and water thoroughly for a minimum of 20 seconds and use clean paper towels to dry them
2. I sanitize my scale with an approved disinfectant and use one of your receiving blankets on my scale for weight measurements
3. I use disposable gloves when examining your baby's mouth and any time I touch you
I am now proud to offer Telehealth Consults through a HIPAA compliant Secure Video
I continue to enjoy my passion for supporting families on their breastfeeding and lactation journeys!