"The percent of US infants who begin breastfeeding is high at 77%. While there is concern that infants are not breastfed for as long as recommended, the National Immunization Survey data show continued progress has been made over the last ten years. Of infants born in 2010, 49% were breastfeeding at 6 months, up from 35% in 2000. The breastfeeding rate at 12 months increased from 16% to 27% during that same time period."
Why, you wonder? Well, it is attributed to an increase of Skin-to-Skin contact between mother and baby immediately following birth AND the practice of Rooming- In (23 of 24 hrs spent with mom instead of baby away from her in nursery). These practices are being implemented more and more at area hospitals here in and around Philadelphia, PA and we are seeing great results for moms and babies success with breastfeeding. While we hope to lower the rate of cesarean sections happening, we can also hope to increase these numbers even more. The report demonstrates that as the percentages of hospitals and birthing centers where >90% mothers and babies get skin to skin and rooming in INCREASES, so does the immediate and long term success of breastfeeding. This supports the Healthy People objectives for 2020 while making mothers and babies happier! Let's keep it up, America! Let's keep it up PA! Let's keep it up Philly! Support support support! Hospital procedures effect breastfeeding success so greatly, more than mothers realize, so we need procedures to support moms and babies getting the best start to breastfeeding. Come on nurses, docs, midwives, doulas, lactation consultants, and let's not forget our peer counselors - This week is also World Breastfeeding Week and the theme is focusing on the importance of support from moms in the community, ie peer counselors! ;) And last but definitely not least, let's keep it up, mommies! You can do it!