A report from the CDC (Center for Disease Control) states that more hospitals have been helping moms with supporting breastfeeding programs. This program was created with the goal of having healthier babies, although the CDC argues it needs to keep improving.

Breastfeeding is an important factor on the baby’s growth in the first 6 months of their lives. It protects the infant against diseases and infections, reducing risks of respiratory infections, asthma, obesity, diabetes and the sudden infant death syndrome.

Infants who are not breastfed are at an increased risk of illness that can compromise their growth and raise the risk of death or disability. Breastfed babies receive protection from illnesses through the mother’s milk. Credit: Huffington Post

The global standard for hospitals to support breastfeeding is known as the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding, and the number of U.S. hospitals following it has doubled since 2007, according to the CDC. It has raised from 29 percent to 54 percent. Also, the CDC reported that nearly 4 million babies are born within the U.S. every year.

“These improvements in hospital support for breastfeeding are promising, but we also want to see more hospitals fully supporting mothers who want to breastfeed,” the CDC said according to the Dispatch Times.

A program launched by WHO (The World Health Organization) and UNICEF (The United Nations Children’s Fund) called BFHI (Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative) encourages, and recognises, hospitals and birthing centers that provide help and care for moms and infants alike. This initiative gathered a team of experts to wrote the guidelines to be followed.

“What happens in the hospital can determine whether a mom starts and continues to breastfeed, and we know that many moms stop breastfeeding earlier than they’d like,” said the CDC’s Dr. Cria Perrine in the briefing, according to CBS News.

Nevertheless, from 3300 maternity centers and hospitals from the U.S. only 289 are considered to fit the standards of the program, according to The Standard Daily.

Doctors believe that the initial moments of the new-born baby and whether the mom breastfeeds or not, could be crucial for the infant’s healthy development. “Breastfeeding is important and it’s good for an infant’s health and for a mother’s health. We’re seeing more progress than we thought we’d see, but we do have much more progress to make,” said CDC Director Dr. Tom Frieden.

Source: Ten Steps