Booby Traps are everywhere — from your OB’s office, to your pediatrician, your mom or best friend, and even cell phone apps. The Institute of Medicine released new report which makes recommendations that, when combined with grassroots efforts like our own, in addition to other government aspirations like the Surgeon General’s Call To Action, may mean we’re finally pointed in the right direction to be able to change things. The Institute of Medicine’s recommendations specifically tackle some Institutional Booby Traps that affect many, many Babes.
In addition to the ever-repeated nothing but breastmilk before 6 months, and continuation of breastfeeding in addition to complementary foods until at least one year recommendation from the AAP, they also want hospitals to follow AAP policy recommendations and to aim to qualify as Baby-Friendly. They also discourage health professionals from giving out formula, and want advertising of the products to the public to cease, in an attempt to really start encouraging our country to adhere to the World Health Organization’s International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes.
They also urge better access to quality lactation assistance in both hospital and health care settings. The Surgeon General’s Call to Action to Support Breastfeeding highlighted some of the severe lack of access to quality lactation care for women.
Studies have identified major deficits relevant to breastfeeding in hospital policies and clinical practices, including a low priority given to support for breastfeeding and education about it, inappropriate routines and provision of care, fragmented care, and inadequate hospital facilities for women who are breastfeeding.
Hopefully with the acknowledgement from multiple sources that we are failing the 75% of moms who start out trying to breastfeed, we may be able to really start making changes. For example, putting more emphasis on the importance of breastfeeding consultation from experts could result in partial or even complete coverage by insurance companies for lactation consultants and equipment, maybe even via Medicaid programs, who often cover some of the women least likely to be successful in their breastfeeding attempts. They specifically recommend that there be no cost-sharing on lactation services. Whoo!
As long as recommendations like these go from paper to action, we might really have a chance at stopping some Institutional Booby Traps in their tracks. Do you think the IOM’s recommendations will be put into practice?
Image credit MuddyBootsPhoto via Flickr
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Christie Haskell is a coffee and tea-addicted wife to Kyle and mother of two wee beasties — Rowan (7) and Aurora the Destroyer (2). She’s a true geek at heart and spends too much time playing video games and reading fantasy novels when she’s not typing her fingers off for CafeMom’s The Stir or her personal blog-love, DailyMomtra.