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Free breastfeeding workshops which will be held at Harlingen Medical Center on June 29 and 30 will provide valuable information on the best nutrition nature provides for newborn babies – as well as continuing education credits for nurses.

The workshops are free and open to new mothers as well as nurses, social workers, other health professionals. Participants can attend on one or both days of the two-day event.

The first day of the workshop, on “Breastfeeding Management,” will be held on Wednesday, June 29 from 8 a.m. to 4:15 p.m., and will include six continuing education credits for nurses.

The second day of the workshop, on “Breastfeeding the Compromised Infant” (such as breastfeeding premature babies) will be held on Thursday, June 30 from 8 a.m. to 1:15 p.m., and include four contact hours for nurses.

The workshops will be held in Harlingen Medical Center’s Medical Office Building (MOB) Conference Room, 5005 S. Expressway 77 (in the building closest to the Expressway, outside the hospital, on the first floor, behind the elevators). The event is sponsored by the Texas Department of State Health Services.

Priscilla Claudio, RN, IBCLC, and Jenny Diaz, RNC, IBCLC, Breastfeeding Educators at Harlingen Medical Center, who have been certified by the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners, cited studies which have shown that breast milk helps protect newborn babies from various health conditions. In addition, Ms. Claudio said that breastfeeding promotes closeness between mom and baby.

“We encourage mothers to breast feed, and we teach them about what we call skin-to-skin breastfeeding with their baby,” Ms. Diaz said. “The purpose of skin-to-skin is to encourage breastfeeding by placing the baby on mom’s chest area as soon as possible after birth. This also helps to make the bonding closer between mom and baby.”

New mothers can also learn about breastfeeding in advance (before their baby is born) by attending free childbirth preparation classes held at Harlingen Medical Center, which Ms. Claudio teaches, on the last Saturday morning of every month, from 9 a.m. to 12 noon, also in the HMC MOB Conference Room.

To learn more about the breastfeeding and childbirth classes, and the Women’s Center at Harlingen Medical Center, please call 956-365-1139, or visit

For more information or to register for the upcoming breastfeeding workshops, please contact Barbara Disbennett, Education Coordinator at Harlingen Medical Center, at 956-365-1034; or e-mail