Breastfeeding and Breast Pumps
When welcoming a new baby, one of the most natural things to consider is feeding. Should I breastfeed or bottle feed? If I breastfeed, how will I get milk to my baby when I go back to work? Which breast pump should I use? Can I get a breast pump through my insurance?
These are just some of the questions you may find yourself asking. In this article, we address some of these basic questions to help you prepare for this new chapter in your life.
There are many benefits associated with breastfeeding beyond the natural closeness it provides between a mother and child. Several of these benefits are health-related and promote better health for both mother and baby.1 When direct feeding is not an option, pumping provides an alternative method of getting milk to your baby.
Benefits for mother:
- Breastfeeding releases hormones that promote mothering behavior
- Helps burn calories
- Reduces the risk of ovarian and breast cancer
- Promotes bone health
Benefits for baby:
- Breast milk is easier for the baby to digest and provides all the nutrients, calories and fluids a baby needs to be healthy
- Breast milk contains substances not found in formula that helps protect against disease and infection, including ear infections, pneumonia and other bacterial and viral infections, such as meningitis
- Breast milk helps with growth and development of organs
Choosing a breast pump: Manual or electric?
There are two main types of breast pumps available on the market: manual and electric. According to Michelle Zevgolis, RN and Certified Breastfeeding Specialist, each type has its benefits, so choosing a breast pump can come down to personal preference and your needs. The below chart examines some typical pros and cons for both manual and electric breast pumps, as outlined by Michelle.
Manual Breast Pumps
Electric Breast Pumps
How to get a breast pump through your insurance
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Health Resources and Services Administration, the Affordable Care Act expands coverage for women’s health to preventative services, as well as “breastfeeding support, supplies and counseling in conjunction with each birth.”2
There are several factors an insurance company may consider and/or require before approving coverage of a breast pump, including, but not limited to: 3
- When the pump is to be received (whether before or after birth)
- Whether the covered pump is manual or electric
- Whether the breast pump is purchased or rented
- The length of a rental period
Breast pumps offered through McKesson
How to order your breast pump through McKesson
When ordering your breast pump, McKesson Patient Care Solutions representatives can help advise which pumps are covered by various insurance plans and even help obtain the necessary paperwork and bill your insurance carrier on your behalf. Our representatives are available to:
- Explain our breast pump product selection and which accessories are available at an additional charge
- Advise which breast pump your insurance plan will pay for and answer questions about your coverage
- Arrange delivery of the pump to you with free standard shipping**
Please call MPCS at 844.PCS.MOMS (844.727.6667) to speak to a representative about our product offering and your insurance coverage Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-8 p.m. or Saturday 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Eastern Time.
*Contingent upon the requested product being a covered benefit under the customer’s insurance plan.
**Shipping is contingent upon receiving product authorization from the insurance payer.
1: HealthyChildren.org. Why Breastfeed. November 21, 2015. Retrieved from: https://www.healthychildren.org/English/ages-stages/baby/breastfeeding/Pages/Why-Breastfeed.aspx
2: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
3: Healthcare.gov. Health Benefits & Coverage: Breastfeeding Benefits. Retrieved from: https://www.healthcare.gov/coverage/breast-feeding-benefits/
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