International Breast Feeding Week observed; Lactation Consultants felicitated
Less than 40% of infants aged six months and below are exclusively breastfed worldwide
Hyderabad, August 06… Breast Feeding can cut infant mortality rate said Dr. Evita Fernandez, Managing Director, Fernandez Hospital speaking at a program organised to celebrate Breast Feeding Week here in city today. Mother’s feeding newborns within the first hour of birth is very low in India. Early initiation of breast feeding is beneficial for the child and good benefits are seen in overall development in the child when the babies are breast fed for the first six months, she said. Giving milk to the child is beneficial for the mother too. Breast feeding mothers have decreased risk of breast, ovarian and uterine cancers, less stress and osteoporosis she added. The program was graced by Mrs. Padma Lagadapati, Mrs. Sarita Reddy, several pediatricians, gynecologists, etc.
Fernandez Hospital, city’s 64 years old hospital felicitated Lactation Consultants on the occasion. Chief Guest Mrs. Padma Lagadapati gave away Certificates of Appreciation to Sister Sunanda, Sister Vijayasree, Sister Shirley, Sister Nalini and Sister Sridevi. The professionals who teach young mothers to breast feed get very little recognition, and hence we decided to felicitate them informed Dr. Evita Fernandez, Managing Director of Fernandez Hospital.
Speaking on the occasion Mrs. Padma Lagadapati said that Breast feeding is an investment helping a child grow into a healthy child. Forty percent of newborns in India are low weight in India. She said that in a country with high infant mortality rate generating awareness about the importance of breast feeding is important. Breast feeding is crucial for lifelong health, every mother should breast feed, she said.
Dr. G. Pramod, Director, Fernandez Hospital who heads the neo-natal care said that the role of lactation consultants is very important in increasing breast feeding rates. Early initiation of breast feeding, exclusive breast feeding for the first six months and continued breast feeding till 1 year is vital for the babies’ health, he said.
Twenty years ago, the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA) launched its first World Breast feeding Week (WBW) campaign, with the theme: “Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative”. Today, World Breastfeeding Week (WBW) is an annual celebration which is held from the 1st to 7th August.
Breast feeding is nature’s way of protecting both mother and child. However, currently, fewer than 40% of infants aged six months and below are exclusively breastfed worldwide, said Dr. Evita. She added that Fernandez Hospital always gives importance to breastfeeding. As soon as babies are born they are placed on the Mother’s chest, thus providing skin to skin contact, which plays an important part in the initiation and establishment of lactation. Breast feeding should be avoided only when a baby is suffering from Galactosemia or when the mother is on anticancer medications and certain other medicines.