Infant Feeding Specialist Service

Add to CPD Subscribe to page updates Start a discussion

16 April 2020: service update

During the Covid-19 outbreak, the Infant Feeding Specialist Service is still operating. Peer supporters from the Breastfeeding Support service are also still visiting postnatal wards each day, and carrying out phone and video calls. There are two face-to-face appointment-only clinics each week, and occasional home visits where there is no other way to help. 

Covid-19 breastfeeding support information leaflet

Further updates can be found on the Breastfeeding Islington Facebook page, where mothers can also contact the service.


The infant feeding specialist service can help where there are particular concerns about a baby’s feeding. It is designed to support mothers and babies with more complex difficulties that have not been resolved with basic breastfeeding support. 

A referral comes through to the Infant Feeding Coordinator, who decides whether to provide a face-to-face assessment, suggest management, or refer to resources over the phone. They also decide if the case can be followed up by breastfeeding peer supporters with feedback to the Infant Feeding Coordinator. Post-intervention information is not routinely provided. 

Breastfeeding support includes help for: 

  • mums who need help with baby attaching at the breast
  • mum having pain or sore nipples, engorgement or mastitis
  • babies having difficulties gaining weight (in early stages)
  • babies with tongue tie or suspected tongue tie
  • babies not wanting to go to breast
  • mum needing to increase milk supply.

More complex problems include:

  • milk supply issues possibly needing medication
  • babies not gaining weight (flat curves or decreasing weight) over period of time
  • breastfed babies with symptoms of colic (usually related to effective attachment at the breast)
  • breast or bottle fed babies with symptoms of reflux (attachment at the breast, and, for bottlefeeding babies, it can be bottlefeeding technique or constitution that needs to be checked)
  • babies whose parents wonder if they have a cow’s milk allergy but without blood in stool, we can assess feeding first to rule out any issues there before trial of extensively hydrolysed milk 
  • any other issues (eg helping mum feed after breast abcess) that are considered complex or that the GP would like us as health professionals to assess first. 

More information

The GP Infant Feeding Network provides evidence-based, accessible information on a whole range of topics related to feeding.

Eligibility criteria


  • Babies and families resident in Islington

How to refer

EMIS form

Referral methods: Email

A referral form can be found in ISL EMIS under
ISL global documents > Paediatric > GP Infant Feeding Referral Form and Protocol


Alternatively clinicians can call the telephone helpline (leave a message if no one responding, with details of the mum/baby, contact details and the problem).

t: 0203 316 8439


Mothers can refer using the telephone helpline or generic email. 

t: 0203 316 8439