Lactation Consultants

Breastfeeding has been shown to be an important advantage for a newborn's overall good health and is strongly encouraged at all three sites. Each of our maternity units offers the services of trained and certified lactation consultants — nurses whose job is to promote breastfeeding and educate and assist moms to achieve success in their efforts.

To speak with a lactation consultant, call:
Charlton Memorial Hospital 508-973-7062
St. Luke’s Hospital 508-997-MILK
Tobey Hospital 508-273-4060

To register for a breastfeeding class, call:
Charlton Memorial Hospital 508-973-7308
St. Luke’s Hospital 508-973-5445
Tobey Hospital 508-273-4545

Get more information about childbirth education classes.


Baby Café

Southcoast is proud to host Baby Café, a friendly and comfortable drop-in session for pregnant and Breast-Feeding mothers to learn more about breastfeeding. Peer support and one-on-one help from specially trained health professionals is available, including professional lactation support.

In the Baby Café, mothers can relax, share tips and techniques, and socialize with other moms. One-on-one help from specially trained health professionals is available, including professional lactation support and WIC peer counselors. Also, babies can be weighed and breastfeeding assessed.

Originating in England, there are now more than 100 Baby Café centers around the world, including 42 locations across 12 states in the USA, with more in development.

The program is led locally by Southcoast Health Obstetrician/Gynecologist Uma Harinarayanan, MD, with assistance is provided by Southcoast lactation consultants.

For the latest locations and schedule, visit the Southcoast Wellness Calendar

For more information about Southcoast's Baby Café centers, call 508-973-2208 or email your questions to


The evidence is in. Studies have shown breastfeeding is best for mother and baby. From a reduction in the risk of breast and ovarian cancers and osteoporosis for women to a decrease in the incidence of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, diarrhea, ear infections, leukemias and allergies in children.

And when you figure in the money saved in formula and doctor's visits — about $1,500 and $500 a year, respectively — it's hard to beat this natural way of feeding baby.

For successful nursing, follow these tried and true tips:

  • Nurse frequently and on demand. Babies nurse every 1-3 hours. Feed baby at the first signs of hunger, such as when waking up or sucking on hands. If baby cries before being fed, it is much harder to get her to calm down and nurse.
  • To begin, bring baby toward you, tummy to tummy. Don't lean over baby. Stroke baby's lips with nipple and she will root - open her mouth wide in search of the breast. Pull baby onto breast quickly, making sure baby takes some of the areola, the dark ring around the nipple. If baby takes only the nipple, break the suction with your clean finger into the corner of baby's mouth. Correct positioning is crucial to preventing sore and cracked nipples.
  • Most newborns require 20 to 40 minutes to complete a feeding and should feed on each breast with a burp after each one. Let baby end feeding on each breast. You will hear baby slow or stop sucking and swallowing. Break the suction. Start next feeding on second breast.
  • You will know your baby is getting enough by the number of wet and soiled diapers she produces.
    • Day 1 (before milk is in): One wet and one soiled diaper.
    • Day 2 (before milk is in): Two of each type of diaper. The soiled ones will appear black because of meconium baby is excreting. Breastmilk works as a laxative to rid baby of meconium.
    • Days 3 to 5 (milk comes in): Six or more wet diapers and 2 to 4 stools a day. (But note that some babies pass stools every day, while others will go a day or two before passing stools.)
  • Nursing mothers should take care of themselves, as well as baby. Nap when baby naps and let the housework go. Eat well-balanced meals as you did during pregnancy and try to get some exercise every day, like taking baby for a walk.
  • Don't use street drugs or smoke. A smoking mother predisposes her baby to respiratory illnesses. As for drinking alcohol, the La Leche League states that occasional drinks in limited amounts (1 to 2 drinks) is compatible with breastfeeding. Consult your doctor.
  • The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that babies be breastfed through their first year and after that for as long as is mutually desired.

Links & Resources

Find a Physician: 844-744-5544

Fathers/significant others/partners: 24 hours
Family/friends: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Children under 12, other than siblings of the infant, are not allowed to visit.

Charlton Memorial Hospital:

St. Luke's Hospital:

Tobey Hospital: