UNICEF’s “2023 Global Breastfeeding Scorecard” offers an encouraging update on global efforts to support breastfeeding. Tracking progress over the last decade, the scorecard showcases 10% point increase in global exclusive breastfeeding rates, highlighting the impact of governmental policies and programs dedicated to protecting, promoting, and supporting breastfeeding. This significant improvement reflects a growing commitment to maternal and child health worldwide.

Explore the details and achievements in the latest scorecard here.

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Celebrating its first year, the PUMP for Nursing Mothers Act and the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act have revolutionized workplace rights. The PUMP Act guarantees break time and private space for lactation for most workers, with options for legal action against violations. The Pregnant Workers Fairness Act requires accommodations for pregnancy and related conditions. These laws are a significant advancement in supporting pregnant and lactating employees. Learn more here. 

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A Better Balance’s free legal helpline, known for assisting families with workplace rights, now offers support to pregnant, postpartum, lactating, and parenting students at all education levels, including high school and college. Learn more in their blog announcement: www.abetterbalance.org/pregnant-and-parenting-students-our-free-and-confidential-legal-helpline-is-here-to-support-you.

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In a new report published by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), researchers reviewed the US’s growing array of toddler formulas and concluded that the majority of these products were promoted using misleading marketing tactics. Read the report here.

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Trust for America’s Health’s latest report, ‘State of Obesity 2023: Better Policies for a Healthier America,’ recognizes breastfeeding as an effective obesity-reducing intervention. The report recommends expanding federal funding for breastfeeding support programs. Read more in the report here: www.tfah.org/report-details/state-of-obesity-2023.

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The US Breastfeeding Committee (USBC) has released its updated 2023 State Breastfeeding Reports, now with expanded data on breastfeeding coalitions serving California, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, and Ohio. These comprehensive reports compare breastfeeding rates and key measures against national benchmarks for each state, DC, and four US territories. Read more here: www.usbreastfeeding.org/state-breastfeeding-reports.html.

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Centers for Disease Control released new breastfeeding rates from the National Immunization Survey – Child (NIS-Child). The data examines infant feeding rates and characteristics among U.S. children born between 2013 and 2020. Check out the data here: www.cdc.gov/breastfeeding/data/nis_data/results.html.

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Research shows that delaying the first bath after birth can have a significant impact on early breastfeeding. The International Childbirth Education Association recently published a position paper titled “Delayed Bathing” encouraging parents and care providers to consider delaying the first bath. View the full report: bit.ly/3NO6Bvt.

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The landmark civil rights law, Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA), went into effect in June. Pregnant and postpartum workers can now receive accommodations without having a pregnancy-related disability. The PWFA requires a good-faith conversation between the employer and worker to best meet needs.

Check out this guide by A Better Balance to learn about the PWFA and how to use it in order to stay healthy while earning a paycheck: bit.ly/3JYKYau.

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The International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners (IBLCE) and the International Lactation Consultant Association (ILCA) 2023 IBCLC Care Award applications are now open through March 24, 2023. Hospitals and community-based facilities that have demonstrated commitment to the lactation consultant profession and breastfeeding promotion, protection, and support are encouraged to apply. Read more here.

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The 2023 Lancet Series on Breastfeeding was released on February 7, 2023. The 3-paper Lancet Series explores how breastfeeding is undervalued and underinvested in by governments and public health while the commercial formula milk industry exploits the vulnerabilities of women and families. Authors call for breastfeeding to be society’s collective responsibility and for it to be effectively promoted, supported, and protected. Read more and view the series here.

Access the Lancet Series View the infographic

The House of Representatives passed the Providing Urgent Maternal Protections (PUMP) for Nursing Mothers Act as part of the omnibus spending package on December 22, 2022. The first standalone breastfeeding bill would provide millions of women reasonable workplace accommodations for breast milk expression. These protections are expected to be signed into law by President Biden.

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The entire NYC Health + Hospitals system is Baby-Friendly! This huge milestone comes after Kings County Hospital became Baby-Friendly designated in August of this year. The largest municipal health care system in the nation now has 11 acute care hospitals that are Baby-Friendly designated. Learn more here.

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service announced proposed changes to food packages that are provided to Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) participants. Food packages will be aligned with the latest nutrition science and support equitable food access during critical stages of life. Changes also include better promotion and breastfeeding support for long-term breastfeeding success. Read the proposal here.

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More than 1 in 10 babies are born too early each year. Complications of preterm births cause around 1 million child deaths annually. The World Health Organization (WHO) recently launched new evidence-based recommendations to improve the care of preterm or low birth weight babies. Kangaroo mother care (KMC) and human milk feeding are among the top 25 recommendations for improving the survival, health and well-being of these babies. Learn more about the recommendations here.

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The White House released the National Strategy on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health on September 27, 2022. And on Wednesday, September 28, the Biden-Harris Administration hosted the second-ever White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health. The strategy includes the federal government’s proposed actions for solutions to such challenges, with the inclusion of breastfeeding and human milk feeding. U.S. Breastfeeding Committee Executive Director, Nikia Sankofa, released a statement commending the National Strategy. Read the full statement here.

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The World Health Organization, UNICEF, and other partners have launched a new report, How the marketing of formula milk influences our decisions on infant feeding, which draws on the experiences of over 8,500 women and 300 health professionals across eight countries. The report summarizes the findings of a multinational study examining the impact of breast milk marketing on infant feeding decisions and practices. Read and share the full report here.

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Vice President Harris has recently announced plans to establish a “Birthing-Friendly” hospital designation for facilities that improve maternal outcomes and implement patient safety practices. This would be the first-ever hospital quality designation by the Department of Health and Human Services to focus specifically on maternity care. Read the full announcement here.

White House Press Release

World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA)  is the body that coordinates World Breastfeeding Week (WBW) 2021, a global campaign to inform, anchor, engage, and galvanize action on breastfeeding and related issues. This year’s celebration will focus on the importance of protecting and supporting breastfeeding, as a shared responsibility.

Full WABA Press Release

United States Breastfeeding Committee (USBC) has announced the theme for National Breastfeeding Month (NBM) 2021: Every Step of the Way. This theme highlights the shared vision of a world in which every family is supported to breastfeed at every step of their infant feeding journey.

NBM 2021 Weekly Observances:

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Congratulations to CHAMPS hospital, Merit Health River Oaks, and all the other awardees on their 2020 IBCLC Care Award! The award is presented to hospitals and community based agencies that are consistent in their dedication to promoting, supporting, and protecting breastfeeding by hiring IBCLCs and implementing projects and training that support high-quality lactation care.

Click on the button below to learn more about the award criteria and application process. Your facility or organization could be among the next set of awardees!

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The United States Lactation Consultant Association (USLCA)’s live webinars provides the opportunity to gain valuable education and engage in real-time discussion with the presenter. The webinars are an opportunity to earn CERPs and CNEs at your convenience.

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The 2020 National Breastfeeding Month theme is Many Voices United. “Now, more than ever, we must come together to identify and implement the policy and systems changes that are needed to ensure that every family that chooses breastfeeding has the support and resources they need to succeed.” – USBC

  • Week 1 (August 1-7): World Breastfeeding Week: Support Breastfeeding for a Healthier Planet
  • Week 2 (August 9-15): Native Breastfeeding Week
  • Week 3 (August 16-24): Spotlight on Infant and Young Child Feeding in Emergencies
  • Week 4 (August 25-31): Black Breastfeeding Week: Revive. Restore. Reclaim

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The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) released updated guidance for care of newborns to mothers with COVID-19, finding that evidence now suggests that babies are at low risk of becoming infected when they remain in-room with the mother after birth, if infection control practices are used. This marks a change from the initial AAP guidance, which recommended temporary separation of newborn infants from infected mothers. Experts based the cautious approach on the limited amount of information available in April, when the initial guidance was first written. The early research came from China, where the universal protocol was to immediately separate all newborn infants from infected mothers and isolate them for 14 days.

The new interim guidance, provided in an FAQ format, can be found at the link below

NEW INTERIM GUIDANCE AAP NEWS RELEASE

In light of recent evidence of COVID-19 reactive antibodies in breast milk, the World Health Organization (WHO) has updated their guidance and taken a stronger stance in favor of breastfeeding and skin to skin care.

WHO STATEMENT

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