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Penn Dental School’s Robert Schattner Center will be the home of a lactation suite easily accessible to students, faculty, patients, and visitors.

Credit: Sophia Dai

Penn's School of Dental Medicine has introduced a free-standing lactation suite to promote convenience for mothers on the go. Located on the second floor of the Dental School’s Robert Schattner Center, it is the first site in the University to house one of these specially designed units.

The lactation “pod,” manufactured by Mamava and installed in February, is entirely self-contained and mobile. With two benches, a fold-down table, a mirror, and a power outlet for plugging in a breast pump, the pod is designed for one person use but has enough room for a mother with multiple children or a stroller. 

The lactation suite is easily accessible to students, faculty, patients, and visitors, Penn Dental reported. Users can access the pod through the Mamava app, which uses bluetooth technology to unlock the pod and mark it as in use when someone shuts the door. Users can also request an access code at the Dental School's security desk.

“We want to ensure Penn Dental Medicine is a welcoming, supportive environment for all,” Penn Dental School Dean Mark Wolff told Penn Dental News. “This innovative space offers a comfortable, clean and stress-free environment for breastfeeding mothers while here at the School.”

The mobile pod is not the only option for nursing mothers at the Dental School: the school also contains a full lactation suite. The lactation suite was recently relocated to the school's basement, where it received upgrades such as additional space and two private rooms. 

Penn has publicly made an effort to make lactation stations available to mothers. Penn's Human Resources division provides an interactive map which lists the locations, amenities, and availabilities of the 36 lactation facilities on campus.