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Spirit of Women

WCHOB Promotes Breastfeeding During "World Breastfeeding Week"

Released: 8/8/2014

Women & Children’s Hospital of Buffalo (WCHOB) continues to promote the benefits of exclusive breastfeeding through participation in World Breastfeeding Week. With the message of “Breastfeeding: A Winning Goal for Life!” a diverse group of faculty members advocated the healthy practice at an informational booth in WCHOB’s lobby on August 6.

This year’s theme acknowledges that when mothers and babies succeed in their breastfeeding plans, they can enjoy a lifetime of benefits. To encourage more mothers to exclusively breastfeeding, supporters of World Breastfeeding Week aim to surround mothers with a comprehensive support team, ranging from healthcare and childcare providers to family, friends, physicians, nurses, and employers. With every party’s collaboration, team members help mothers and babies reach their breastfeeding goals.

Breastfeeding, especially exclusive breastfeeding, has been shown to be beneficial for infants and mothers alike. Infants that breastfeed reduce their risk of asthma, gastroenteritis, obesity, respiratory infections, and chronic conditions. For mothers, breastfeeding for a minimum of one year has been shown to reduce the risk of breast cancer, ovarian cancer, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, obesity, and multiple other conditions.

At the booth, representatives from various departments at WCHOB educated the public about this support network. Mary Marzinek, International Board Certified Lactation Consultant, sat with Deirdre Miklas and Mary Grace Piskorowski from Nursing Education, as well as Mary Grace’s five month old daughter. Representatives from local resources WIC and Care Connection also joined the table to let parents know how they can help new mothers give their child a healthy start.

The hospital’s efforts to promote breastfeeding are not limited to the seven days of World Breastfeeding Week. All six WCHOB outpatient OB/GYN Centers and the WNY Regional Perinatal Center have been designated by the New York State Department of Health as Breastfeeding Friendly Practices. Each center offers a display of breastfeeding education materials with information on advice, important facts, nutritional needs, support and more. Staff has been trained in the skills necessary to implement and maintain a breastfeeding-friendly office policy, and breastfeeding “champions” have been identified at each site. WCHOB also offers patients immediate access to breastfeeding support classes offered by our Childbirth Education Department, as well as board certified lactation consultants who are available seven days a week to help mothers successfully breastfeed and bond with their infants.

For more information about World Breastfeeding Week, visit their website.