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Salina Regional Health Center opened the newly installed Mamava lactation pod for visitors and employees to use in the main lobby of the hospital on Wednesday, July 21. The Mamava lactation pod is the first one available in a Kansas health care facility.

Salina Regional Health Center installed the first Mamava lactation pod in a Kansas health care facility inside the hospital’s main lobby. The 4-foot by 8-foot pod gives a clean private space for visiting mothers and employees to use for breastfeeding or pumping. The Mamava lactation pod was funded by the Salina Regional Health Foundation to help support the health of future Kansans.

Research has shown there are many advantages to breastfeeding infants as the antibodies contained in breast milk help babies fight off viruses and bacteria. Many mothers feel fulfillment and joy from the physical and emotional communion they experience with their child while nursing, according to HealthyChildren.org. These feelings are augmented by the release of hormones prolactin and oxytocin. Prolactin produces a peaceful, nurturing sensation that allows the mother to relax and focus on your child. Oxytocin promotes a strong sense of love and attachment between the mother and child

The pod was installed two weeks before National Breastfeeding Month in the month of August and can be used by downloading the Mamava App. or by contacting the Women and Infant Services Department. The Mamava App lets the user change the lighting, fan speed, and can choose different sounds to play that help soothe the baby during breastfeeding. Stephanie Buchholz Jones, nurse manager of women and infants services believes the lactation pods will continue to become prevalent in our society and will be added to public spaces throughout Kansas. “Many units within the hospital don’t have a designated space where employees and visitors can go to pump,” said Buchholz Jones. “When visitors ask for a place to pump, our dietitians have made an office space available to them, but it’s not readily accessible. We’re very excited to be able to support breastfeeding visitors and employees with this service.”

Created by Mamava, a company dedicated to transforming the culture of breastfeeding by making it easier for more women to achieve their breastfeeding goals, the Mamava suite is a self-contained, mobile pod with comfortable benches, a fold-down table, an electrical outlet for plugging in a breast pump, and a door that can be locked for privacy. The 4-foot by 8-foot pod is meant for individual use, but can fit more than one person, as well as mothers with babies and other children in tow.

“We’re thrilled to support breastfeeding mamas in Kansas,” said Sascha Mayer, Co-founder and CEO of Mamava. “We believe that all mamas deserve a clean, comfortable, and dignified place to use a breast pump or breastfeed distraction-free—anywhere, anytime. Mamava pods provide flexibility for facilities and easy access for moms.” 

Baby-Friendly USA recognized Salina Regional Health Center by awarding an international Baby-Friendly Designation for adhering to the highest standards of care for breastfeeding mothers and their babies in 2020.