WIC Partners with Hospital to Increase Access to Breast Pumps

WIC Pump Closet, a partnership between PHFE WIC and Emanate Hospital, provides free electric breast pump loans to WIC participants.

Naira Gavurmadzhyan, RDN, IBCLC, and Wendy Fung, RDN, IBCLC with the Emanate health team
Emanate Hospital Breast Pump Closet, West Covina

PHFE WIC Regional Breastfeeding Liaisons, Wendy Fung, MS, RDN, IBCLC and Naira Gavurmadzhyan, RDN, IBCLC launched PHFE WIC’s first Pump Closet in partnership with Emanate Hospital in West Covina. Throughout the pandemic, there has been an increased need for more accessible breast pumps for parents of newborns. This project increases health equity by making breastfeeding support more readily available to WIC participants as they are discharged from the hospital after giving birth.

What is the WIC Pump Closet?

This project provides WIC participants with a hospital-grade electric pump when they are discharged after having their baby. By immediately providing participants with a pump, WIC aims to protect the birthing parent’s milk supply in the time before they can get individualized breastfeeding or chestfeeding support from a lactation consultant.

What hospitals are participating?

Emanate Hospital is the debut location for the Pump Closet Project. It was selected because it is within the PHFE WIC service area and serves a high caseload of WIC-enrolled and WIC-eligible patients. It has five Symphony pumps at this time and WIC staff will work to keep the closet stocked.

How can I get a WIC Pump Closet at my hospital?

Please contact Wendy Fung (WenF@www.phfewic.org) and Naira Gavurmadzhyan (NairaG@www.phfewic.org) to add a WIC Pump Closet to your hospital. They look forward to expanding this project to more hospitals in the Orange, Los Angeles, and San Bernardino Counties.

What kind of breastfeeding help does WIC offer?

WIC provides breastfeeding and chestfeeding education, free lactation consultations, monthly virtual support groups, and an infant feeding helpline. All WIC services, including breastfeeding and chestfeeding assistance, are free to anyone who is signed up for the WIC program.

Can I get a free breast pump from WIC?

WIC loans medical-grade electric breast pumps to WIC parents who are breastfeeding and chestfeeding. To request a free electric pump, send a text to 91997 or contact your WIC office directly.


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