First thing on your list should be to contact your insurance company to inquire about what they will cover and what they won't. (The excerpt below was taken directly from healthcare.gov to provide you details about pump coverage.)
You may be able to get help with breastfeeding at no cost
Health insurance plans must provide breastfeeding support, counseling, and equipment for the duration of breastfeeding. These services may be provided before and after birth.
This applies to Marketplace plans and all other health insurance plans, except for grandfathered plans.
Coverage of breast pumps
Your health insurance plan must cover the cost of a breast pump. It may be either a rental unit or a new one you’ll keep. Your plan may have guidelines on whether the covered pump is manual or electric, the length of the rental, and when you’ll receive it (before or after birth).
But it’s up to you and your doctor to decide what's right for you.
Your doctor’s breastfeeding recommendations
Your insurance plan will often follow your doctor’s recommendations on what’s medically appropriate. Some insurance plans may require pre-authorization from your doctor. Talk to your doctor to find out what this means for you.
Contact your insurance plan with questions about breastfeeding benefits.
Learn more about health coverage if you’re pregnant.
The second thing on your list should be to research what type of breast pumps are out there. I recommend talking to friends who have new babies and have pumped, Looking online for forums that share experiences of people using different pumps. Searching the ratings of pumps on site like Amazon.com. My favorite resources that I go to first are The Baby Guy NYC, La Leche League and online groups such as Facebook mom groups or social forums. I've found that if I put the questions out there I get wonderful candid responses.
Third is to understand that not all pumps work well for all moms. This was where I fell short with my first baby. I spoke with insurance and found out they covered pumps but didn't know there were so many options. I went with the one that I had heard of and figured a pump is a pump is a pump. Not the case. I got my pump, used it on occasion and hated it! I hated pumping with my first child because the pump I had was inefficient for me. This time around I did quite a bit of research, looked at what was in the market, considered the reviews, spoke to friends, Facebook friends, Facebook people I had no clue who they were and decided upon a different pump than I had the first time. This time I knew what features I needed to help me feel relaxed and comfortable using it. It was a much more in-depth process but a much more educated process this time buying a pump.
This can be an overwhelming time but I hope that by have a guide as to the best way to find what you need and what may help you in the months ahead I have taken some of the guess work out of it. Pumps are a personal choice, go out and educate yourself about what's out there and what may fit your needs best. And if you choose not to pump, hell yea! If I didn't have to, I wouldn't, I loved breastfeeding my babe.
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