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Canadian Pharmacists Association
Canadian Pharmacists Association
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Breastfeeding Resources

Breastfeeding Practice Interest Network (PIN) for Pharmacists

The CPhA Breastfeeding and Infant Nutrition list-serve provides sharing of news, information, upcoming education opportunities, breastfeeding issues, new research on medications in breastmilk, and other topics for pharmacists with a particular interest in the support of breastfeeding families in Canada. The list-serve is open to pharmacists in any specialty area where young families are encountered and opportunities arise to protect, promote and support of breastfeeding. Discussion among members of current issues is encouraged.

In keeping with the World Health Organization International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes and Resolutions, the list-serve provides opportunities for pharmacists to share information and discuss the safe and appropriate choice of breastmilk substitutes and ancillary breastfeeding equipment.

The Canadian Pharmacists Association Breastfeeding and Infant Feeding list-serve was started in 2005, ten years after the passing of the CPhA Position Statement on Breastfeeding and Infant Nutrition in 1995. Members of the list-serve are regularly invited to provide updates for the Breastfeeding Resource area of the CPhA website.

Contact Jennifer Peddlesden for more information or to join.

Breastfeeding Resources for Pharmacists

COVID-19 Resources for Breastfeeding

  • Canadian Pediatric Society Guidelines released April 6, 2020 - “Mothers with suspected or proven COVID-19 and their infants should not be completely separated. Mothers and infants should be allowed to remain together, after potential risks and benefits of rooming-in have been discussed and allowing for shared decision-making with families and their health care providers.” Read more here
  • BC Centre for Disease Control COVID19 Guidelines for Lactation - This guidance by the BC Centre for Disease Control includes lactation information for healthy mothers and infants; postpartum mothers who are a confirmed or suspect case of COVID-19 in home, community setting or in hospital; and mothers who are temporarily separated from their newborn. The guidance also includes information on pasteurized donor human milk and informal milk sharing and a useful infographic from the BCCDC, Breastfeeding and COVID-19,  Adapted by Perinatal Services BC.
  • SafelyFed Canada - This Canadian non-profit non-partisan organization collates safety information on feeding infants and young children during emergencies for health care providers. On their website you will find international resources (e.g., CDC, UNICEF, WHO, etc.) as well as Canadian statements in both English and French.
  • WHO Frequently Asked Questions for Breatfeeding and COVID-19 for Health Care Workers - This FAQ complements the WHO interim guidance: Clinical management of severe acute respiratory infection (SARI) when COVID-19 is suspected.
  • Allaitement en contexte de pandémie - Outil d'information pour les parents (Gouvernement du Québec)
  • Institut national d’excellence en santé et en services sociaux (INESSS) - COVID-19 et grossesse/allaitement

Cannabis Use and Breastfeeding

Resources to assist pharmacists and other health proefssionals with questions about cannabis use and breastfeeding.

Breastfeeding Information

  • La Leche League International (LLLI) and La Leche League Canada (LLLC) - Articles on all aspects of breastfeeding for health professionals and the public. All La Leche League materials have been vetted by the La Leche League International Professional Advisory Board.
  • Kelly Bonyata BS IBCLC Webpage - Current, evidence- based information on parenting and breastfeeding for parents and professionals. A good place to find information on unusual or unique breastfeeding problems or situations. Moderated by Kelly Bonyata, BS IBCLC.
  • The Newman Breastfeeding Clinic & Institute - Dr. Jack Newman’s website offers information for parents and professionals on a wide variety of breastfeeding situations and problems, in particular treatment of candida infections in mother and breastfeeding baby. Information sheets are pdf files and can be printed for clients.
  • LACTNET archives - Searchable archives of postings on LACTNET, a list-serve of lactation consultants, midwives and other medical professionals to discuss issues of breastfeeding.

Live and Online Learning on Breastfeeding

Medications in Breastmilk

  • The Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine (ABM) is a worldwide organization of physicians dedicated to the promotion, protection and support of breastfeeding and human lactation. Their webpage has a selection of protocols of interest to pharmacists on galactogogues, analgesia, antidepressants, contraception and breastfeeding and the drug dependent woman.
  • LactMed - The National Institute of Health National Library of Medicine searchable database on information on drugs and breastfeeding provides the most up-to-date online information on drugs and breastfeeding; type in generic name of medication; analysis and references provided.
  • Breastfeeding Pharmacology - Texas Tech University Health Sciences Centre - Webpage moderated by Tom Hale, RPh PhD, author of Medications and Mothers' Milk (see print references) and includes an online forum, discussion of current controversies, an excellent article on how medications enter milk and newsletter.
  • Drug Information Centres across Canada. All centres across Canada will have up-to-date books on drugs in breastmilk.
  • The IMAGe Centre - Information on Drugs in Pregnancy & Lactation, CHU Sainte-Justine
  • The American Academy of Pediatrics - The Transfer of Drugs and Therapeutics into Human Breast Milk; An Update on Selected Topics
  • E-lactancia – Search for current information on medications in human milk. It is a project of APILAM, Association for Promotion and Cultural and Scientific Research into Breastfeeding, under a Creative Commons License. Available in Spanish and English.
  • The Breastfeeding Network (UK) Drugs Factsheets
  • MotherToBaby Parent Fact Sheets on exposures during pregnancy and lactation
  • Texas Tech University Health Sciences Centre InfantRisk Center Forum
  • Centre de Référence sur les Agents Tératogènes (CRAT), Hôpital Armand-Trousseau, Paris
  • NOTE Message from the Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) regarding Motherisk webpage:  The health care provider referral-only service is still available at the hospital to assess the safety of medications and/or substances consumed by pregnant or nursing women and the potential effects on their babies. Read more here: http://www.sickkids.ca/Motherisk/index.html

Breastfeeding Policy Statements/Breastfeeding Initiatives

Contact a Breastfeeding Expert


  • La Leche League Canada (NOTE: During the COVID-19 pandemic, La Leche Leagu Canada groups are meeting virtually and breastfeeding questions may be submitted online.)
  • Canadian Lactation Consultant Association/Association Canadienne des Consultants en Lactation - Find an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant or find out how to become a lactation consultant with the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners

Breastfeeding Organizations, Networks and Advocacy

  • The Breastfeeding Committee for Canada - National Authority for the WHO UNICEF Baby-Friendly™ Initiative in Canada. (Kelly Coker BScPhm, CPhA Representative on Breastfeeding Committee for Canada: Tel: (705) 765-6254)
  • Infant Feeding Action Coalition of Canada (INFACT) - Monitors breastfeeding protection and support in Canada with regard to adherence to the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes 1981, and subsequent relevant World Health Association (WHA) Resolutions.
  • International Baby Food Action Network (IBFAN) - This website has a full copy of the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes and subsequent, relevant WHA resolutions pertaining to the Code.

Breast Pump Sales/Rental and Nursing Supplementers

Print Reference Materials

(order through Amazon at www.LLLC.ca)
General Information

  • Handouts for clients, information sheets on specific breastfeeding topics, or flyers to promote community breastfeeding support services are available from individual La Leche League Leaders across Canada. Go to La Leche League Canada, www.LLLC.ca, and click on "Find Breastfeeding Help Near You".
  • Mohrbacher N. Breastfeeding answers made simple. Amarillo TX: Hale Publishing LP, 2010
  • Peddlesden, J. Infant nutrition. Patient Self-Care: Helping patients make therapeutic choices. Ottawa, ON: Canadian Pharmacists Association, 2002. (All aspects of infant nutrition, including artificial baby milks).
  • Wiessinger D, West D, Pitman T. The womanly art of breastfeeding. 8th  revised ed. Schaumburg, Ill: La Leche League International, 2010.


  • Briggs, G., R.Freeman and S. Yaffe. Drugs in Pregnancy and Lactation: A Reference Guide to Fetal and Neonatal Risk. 9th edition. Baltimore, ML: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2011. Also available for PDA.
  • Hale T. and Rowe H. Medications and Mothers' Milk. 17th ed. Amarillo, TX: Hale Publishing, 2017. This publication is also available as an online edition.
  • Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH). Exposure to Psychotropic Medications and other Substances During Pregnancy and Lactation, A handbook for Health care Providers. Toronto: CAMH, 2007. For copies call 1-800 661-1111 or publications@camh.net.
  • Ito S, and Brochet MS. Drug use during breastfeeding. In: The Compendium of Pharmaceuticals and Specialties: the Canadian drug reference for health professionals. Ottawa (ON): CPhA, Drug use during breastfeeding.
  • Humphrey, S. The Nursing Mother's Herbal. Minneapolis, MN: Fairview Press, 2003.
  • Ferreira, E., Martin, B. and Morin, C. Grossesse et aillement, Guide thérapeutique 2e. Montréal (QC): Éditions du CHU Sainte-Justine, 2013. https://www.editions-chu-sainte-justine.org/livres/grossesse-allaitement-235.html

Supporting and Protecting Breastfeeding

  • Allain A, Yeong JK. Eds. Code Essentials 4: Complying with the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes and subsequent WHA resolutions. Penang, Malaysia; ICDC (International Code Documentation Centre). 2012.
  • Allain A, Yeong JK. Protecting Infant Health, a Health Workers' Guide to the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes. 11th ed. Penang, Malaysia: International Baby Food Action Network (IBFAN), 2010.
  • Allain A, Yeong JK. Eds. Code Essentials 1: annotated International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes and Subsequent WHA resolutions. Penang, Malaysia; ICDC (International Code Documentation Centre), September 2008.
  • Allain A, Yeong JK. Eds. Code Essentials 2: Guidelines for Policy Makers on Implementing the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes and Subsequent WHA resolutions. Penang, Malaysia; ICDC (International Code Documentation Centre), February 2009.
  • Allain A, Yeong JK. Eds. Code Essentials 3: Responsibilities of Health Workers under the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes and subsequent WHA resolutions. Penang, Malaysia; ICDC (International Code Documentation Centre), March 2009.

This resource list has been compiled by:
Jennifer Peddlesden, BScPharm
Phone/Text: (403) 200-8046
Please contact Jennifer if you have an information source which you would like to recommend for consideration on this resource list for pharmacists or if you would like more information about the Breastfeeding Practice Information Network.