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Lactation Services for Breastfeeding Moms

Mother and new baby

Lactation Consultants

406-238-5083 or 1-800-332-7156

Monday - Friday, 8 am to 5 pm

At Billings Clinic Family Birth Center, we want you to be able to make an informed decision when it comes to breastfeeding.  We also want to provide you with the support you need in making that decision or provide you any help you may need with breast feeding, either in the hospital or after you leave the Family Birth Center.

Our board-certified lactation consultants, who are located onsite, visit all breastfeeding moms while in the hospital to assist with breastfeeding or other lactation concerns.

Our lactation consultant's offices as well as two comfortable, private nursing rooms are located in A Mother's Place, located on the 1st floor of the Family Birth Center, next to Pediatrics.    

Our Lactation Consultants

Diane Powers Lactation Consultant

Diane Powers, BA, IBCLC, RLC

Diane has been a lactation consultant for 30 years. In 1999, Diane was recruited by Billings Clinic to establish a lactation service line for the Family Birth Center and NICU. She continues in this job today. In this capacity, she sees 800 - 1000 mother baby pairs a year, both in inpatient and in the clinic setting following hospital discharge. 

Diane has a passion for the “big whys” in the challenges that present in breastfeeding and a desire to break down those obstacles in a manner that is easily understood—whether by a new parent or professional. Diane lectures nationally and internationally; has published several articles in both the Journal of Human Lactation and Clinical Lactation; and has undertaken, completed, and published two research projects.

Elsa Petersson Lactation Consultant

Elsa Petersson, BS, IBCLC

Elsa has a Bachelor of Science in Health and Human Performance with a vocational background and extensive training in breastfeeding, nutrition, preventative and behavioral health and childhood feeding relationships. Prior to working at Billings Clinic Family Birth Center, she practiced as a board-certified lactation consultant for the local WIC Program.

Elsa has also been privileged to enjoy motherhood and breastfeeding with her son.  Her passion for breastfeeding stems from a genuine love for moms and babies and an acknowledgment that all mothers and their babies deserve the best care and attention to support success. She strives to facilitate the best  possible experience for her patients and recognizes that feeding, at the breast and otherwise, is a relationship between mother and child, not merely a means of nutrition.

Elsa's goal in practicing lactation is to always implement best practices and sound research while also exercising compassion and patient-focused care, being sensitive to the vulnerable period after birth for the mom and the baby. She has been actively involved in the local breastfeeding coalition for the last several years and has worked to collaborate with other advocates of breastfeeding in the community.

Currently, Elsa enjoys being a part of ongoing efforts to steer hospital practices that will promote, support and protect mothers' goals to breastfeed successfully.


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Benefits of Breast Feeding

For Babies 

  • Reduces risk of infectious disease
  • Less likely to develop diabetes
  • Less likely to be obese as a child
  • Protects against gastro-intestinal tract infections
  • Fewer ear infections
  • Decreases SIDS by 45%
  • 75% less likely to be hospitalized with  respiratory illnesses
  • 42% less likely to be diagnosed with allergies
  • It’s been recently discovered that babies receive stem cells from breast milk
  • An infant’s intestinal track is sterile at birth – microorganisms in breast milk establish a healthy environment which contributes to a stronger immune system
  • And... it’s FREE

For Women 

  • Decreased risk of breast cancer
  • Decreased risk of ovarian cancer
  • Decreased risk of developing diabetes
  • Weight loss – burns an estimated 500 calories/day producing milk, which can equal 6 pounds less over 12 months

Additional Cost Savings 

  • Save an estimated $1,432/yearon medical expenses from doctor visits
  • An average savings of $1,500-$2,000 to purchase formula

The Environment 

  • 80,000 non-nursing women,purchasing cans of formula,create 17,000 tons of tin in 6 months in land fields around the US



For Babies: 

1. Prolonged and Exclusive Breastfeeding Reduces the Risk of Infectious Diseases in Infancy, Pediatrics Vol.126, No.1 July 1010 pp. 18-25

2. (10) 00385-2/abstract

3. Glucose and Insulin Levels are Increased in Obese and Overweight Mother’s Breast Milk. Food and Nutrition Sciences, 2011, 2, 201-206, published on line May 2011 ( 

4. Protection of the Neonate by the Innate Immune System of  Developing Gut and of Human Milk. Pediatric Res. 61. (1): 1-8. 2007 and Breast Milk Sugars Give Infants a Protective Coat; Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and The New York Times., 8/4/2010 

5. Exosomes with Immune Modulatory Features are Present in Human Breast Milk, The Journal of Immunology, copyright 2007

6. Breastfeeding Reduces Risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome: A Metanalysis, Pediatrics 123. (3) e406-e410. 2009 abstract 

7. Breastfeeding, Asthma, and Allergy: A Tale of Two Cities.
Pediatric Allergy Immunology. 2011 Dec. 4 and Influence and Mechanisms of Maternal and Infant Diets on the Development of Childhood Asthma. Pediatric Neonatology, 2013 Feb., 54 (1) 

8. Maternal Asthma, Infant Feeding and the Risk of Asthma in
Childhood. J Allergy Clin. Immunol 2002; 110:65-67 

9-10. Breast to Brain: The potential of stem cells in human milk. Twigger et al; Journal of Human Lactation 29 (2) 136-139 May ‘13 For Women: 1-3. Collaborative Group on Hormonal Factors in Breast Cancer: Breast Cancer and Breastfeeding: Collaborative Reanalysis of Individual Date from 47 Epidemiological Studies in 30 countries, Including 50,302 Women with Breast Cancer and 96,973 Women Without the Disease. Lancet 360. (9328): 187-195-, 2002 

For Additional Cost Savings:
1. Healthcare Costs of Formula Feeding in the First Year of Life. Pediatrics 103. (4):870-876, 1999
2. Data acquired through simple math. Calculating cost of formula, then amount ingested by the growing infant over the first year of life.

For the Environment:
1. Page 7

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