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Basic management of the Breastfeeding Family training program

 

Why do we need Breastfeeding Supporters?

 

“…. no mother has the responsibility to breastfeed a child unless she is completely — in every possible way — supported to make the decision and to succeed with her intentions to breastfeed. Hence, no woman can be “expected” to breastfeed unless she is “enabled” — by culturally sensitive, unbiased information and complete social, economic, and clinical support — to decide to breastfeed, and is then given every and all the social, clinical, political and economic support she may need to achieve her breastfeeding goals.” Source: Paige Smith and Miriam Labbok in It Takes a Village: The Role of the Greater Community in Inspiring and Empowering Women to Breastfeed (2014).

 

Breastfeeding is an important public health issue. The art and science of breastfeeding is not a matter for specialists alone, but is a foundation of health that should be widely understood and respected. Families need access to skilled breastfeeding support. It is vital that people who have contact with breastfeeding families fully understand the initiation process for breastfeeding and how to support a woman appropriately in her desire to breastfeed.

 

Comprehensive support is what helps families reach their goals. A meta-analysis  reviewed almost 200 studies to look at effective interventions on breastfeeding initiation, exclusivity and continued breastfeeding in five settings: health systems & services, home & family environment, community environment, work environment and policy environment. They also looked at the combination of these together. The authors concluded that no one setting is adequate. The greatest impact on exclusive breastfeeding and lactation duration was demonstrated when breastfeeding families received counselling and education concurrently across settings: health systems, home & family and the community environment.

Source: (https://www.who.int/nutrition/publications/infantfeeding/global-bf-scorecard-2018.pdf?ua=1)

 

“A mother’s access to skilled breastfeeding counselling is critical to establishing adequate breastfeeding practices. Mothers need to be informed and sensitized about breastfeeding during pregnancy, and breastfeeding counselling should be provided by trained health workers or lactation consultants within the first hour of life and during the initial months following childbirth to facilitate early and exclusive breastfeeding and promptly address breastfeeding challenges.” Source: The first hour of life: Making the case for infant and young child feeding everywhere. New York: UNICEF, 2016.

 

“All pregnant women must have basic information about breastfeeding in order to make informed decisions.” Pregnancy is a key time to inform women about the importance of breastfeeding, support their decision making and pave the way for their understanding of the maternity care practices that facilitate its success.

Breastfeeding education should thus include information on

  • the importance of breastfeeding and the risks of giving formula or other breast-milk substitutes

  • global recommendations on exclusive breastfeeding for the first 6 months, the risks of giving formula or other breast-milk substitutes, and the fact that breastfeeding continues to be important after 6 months when other foods are given

  • Mothers need to be informed that birth practices have a significant impact on the establishment of breastfeeding

  • the importance of immediate and sustained skin-to-skin contact

  • the importance of early initiation of breastfeeding

  • the importance of rooming-in

  • the basics of effective positioning and attachment, on-demand feeding, and recognizing feeding cues

  • possible challenges such as engorgement, or a perception of not producing enough milk and how to address them

Source: The Implementation Guidance Protecting, Promoting and Supporting Breastfeeding in facilities providing maternity and newborn services: the revised Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative, World Health Organization, 2018.

 

Health-care providers who provide infant feeding services, including breastfeeding support, should have sufficient knowledge, competence and skills to support women to breastfeed. Anyone who helps mothers with infant feeding should be assessed on their ability to:

1. use listening and learning skills to counsel a mother;

2. use skills for building confidence and giving support to counsel a mother;

3. counsel a pregnant woman about breastfeeding;

4. assess a breastfeed;

5. help a mother to position herself and her baby for breastfeeding;

6. help a mother to attach her baby to the breast;

7. explain to a mother about the optimal pattern of breastfeeding;

8. help a mother to express her breast milk;

9. help a mother to cup feed her baby;

10. help a mother to initiate breastfeeding within the first hour after birth;

11. help a mother who thinks she does not have enough milk;

12. help a mother with a baby who cries frequently;

13. help a mother whose baby is refusing to breastfeed;

14. help a mother who has flat or inverted nipples;

15. help a mother with engorged breasts;

16. help a mother with sore or cracked nipples;

17. help a mother with mastitis;

18. help a mother to breastfeed a low-birth-weight baby or sick baby;

19. counsel a mother about her own health;

20. implement the Code in a health facility.

Source: Implementation Guidance Protecting, Promoting and Supporting Breastfeeding in facilities providing maternity and newborn services: the revised Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative, World Health Organization, 2018, p20

 

Become a Breastfeeding Supporter!

Introducing

Breastfeeding Support, Information, Promotion and Protection in a Baby-Friendly Community: a 20 hour course for the Basic Management of the Breastfeeding Family

Course Aim: Enabling participants to develop the clinical and interpersonal skills needed to support, promote and protect optimal breastfeeding practices, to help families to cope with breastfeeding difficulties and refer to a specialist when necessary.

 

Become a Breastfeeding Supporter through this 20 hours training program on the Basic management of the Breastfeeding Family. The Breastfeeding Clinic will offer this course over 6 sessions, one 4-hour Saturday morning per month starting Jan 2020.

 

We are inviting all who are interested in joining our cause to promote and protect lactation and to support breastfeeding families to indicate their interest in this training program. Please WhatsApp/email your name and contact number to: 083 415 4657 or email.

 

Participants will receive, among other things:

  • training (and mentorship) necessary to attain competence (knowledge and skills) in counselling the feeding decision

  • use listening and learning skills (enhance your communication skills) to counsel breastfeeding families and build their confidence

  • discuss with a pregnant woman the importance of breastfeeding and outline practices that support the initiation of breastfeeding

  • transform your understanding about what breastfeeding/breast milk really is (an irreplaceable relationship, a brain developer, an immune system, a living tissue)

  • providing info to parents on birth practices and its influence on breastfeeding + importance of skin-to-skin contact immediately postpartum

  • assisting and assessing the mother and baby in achieving comfortable and effective positioning and attachment at the breast

  • counselling mothers regarding maintaining exclusive breastfeeding

  • learning feeding cues

  • providing info to parents on the importance of rooming-in

  • teaching and assisting mothers with hand/electric expression of milk

  • explain to parents the optimal patterns of breastfeeding

  • help parents to cup & finger feed baby when needed

  • teaching formula preparation and feeding to parents when necessary

  • help a mother who thinks she does not have enough milk

  • help parents with a baby who cries frequently

  • help a mother whose baby is refusing to breastfeed

  • help a mother who has flat or inverted nipples

  • help a mother with engorged breasts

  • help a mother with sore or cracked nipples

  • help a mother with mastitis

  • help a mother to breastfeed a low-birth-weight baby

  • counsel a mother about her own health

  • support breastfeeding for employed women

  • starting solids guidance

  • implement the Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes and understand the effect of marketing on infant feeding practices

  • assisting mothers in finding sustained support in the community (weighing and follow-up)

  • transform yourself (take the leap to explore new ways to work with families, connect with other women who love working with moms and babies, open your mind about new concepts surrounding breastfeeding)

 

The “Breastfeeding Support, Information, Promotion and Protection in a Baby-Friendly Community: a 20 hour course for the Basic Management of the Breastfeeding Family”, (based on the WHO/UNICEF Section 3: Breastfeeding Promotion and Support in a Baby-Friendly Hospital, a 20-hour course for maternity staff course), will equipped a person with the basic knowledge and skills needed to support breastfeeding families.

 

It will not qualified a person as a Lactation Consultant OR Breastfeeding Counsellor but rather a Breastfeeding Supporter who can take care of the most common breastfeeding issues and refer breastfeeding parents to a Lactation Consultant when needed  The Breastfeeding Supporter will not have the skills or credentials to be a lactation consultant. Becoming a Board Certified Lactation Consultant requires many hours of didactic learning and hands-on training. Breastfeeding Supporters can take care of the most common breastfeeding issues and assist lactation consultants in their community by providing on-going breastfeeding support for dyads who are under the care of lactation consultants.

 

During and after completion of the course Breastfeeding Supporters will be expected to provide evidence-based information – that means information based on science, research and best practice - not give personal opinions. When helping a family, Breastfeeding Supporters will be focusing on the needs of the mother and baby and put personal experiences to one side whenever possible. 

 

Supporting breastfeeding families require teamwork. Participants will be added to a Breastfeeding Supporters WhatsApp group. Here they can ask question and receive updates. To avoid obsolescence on-going training / updates / feedback sessions will be presented by The Breastfeeding Clinic (dates to be confirmed).

Lactation and breastfeeding are a critical part of the reproductive continuum! Breastfeeding is more than a lifestyle choice; it is an investment in the health and sustainable future of mothers, babies, families, the economy and the environment. Become part of the solution! Contact us today!! WhatsApp/email your name and contact number to: 083 415 4657 or email.

 

Knowledge guides our practice, strengthens our value, and supports our role in transforming health