Preserving breastfeeding during COVID times
Medela initiative to raise awareness on the global impact of COVID-19 on breastfeeding and to protect and support breastfeeding during COVID-19 times
Having changed our world considerably, COVID-19 is also having a significant impact on maternal and neonatal clinical practices. Breastfeeding support services for pregnant women and mothers are being impacted, resulting in disrupted breastfeeding behaviours and an unprecedented decrease in breastfeeding rates.
As a global advocate of breastfeeding and breast milk nutrition, Medela wanted to understand the impact that the pandemic is having on breastfeeding and lactation. We have thus compiled evidence from an extensive literature review and testimonies from clinicians around the world, echoed in surveys taken by mothers, about the hidden but immense impact of COVID-19 on breastfeeding, both in communities and hospitals around the world.
Sharing what we have learned, we want to join healthcare professionals in taking further action to continue advocating for mother and child. We want to support mothers in making informed decisions, and enable them to establish adequate milk supplies from the moment their baby is born throughout the critical time window for lactation initiation – all to prevent the long-term clinical and economic impacts of decreased breastfeeding.
Two dedicated websites for clinicians and mothers
To support this call to action, Medela has created assets and resources to provide insight and guidance for mothers and healthcare professionals likewise, all compiled on two websites dedicated to the protection and support of lactation initiation and breastfeeding during COVID times:
- The global impact of COVID-19 on breastfeeding, the information hub for healthcare professionals, contains evidence-based facts and figures on the global impact of COVID-19 on breastfeeding, as well as a wealth of resources and educational materials to support mothers in their breastfeeding journey from hospitalisation to the transition home.
- The COVID-19 information for pregnant and breastfeeding mothers website provides mothers with the latest and most reliable information and helpful resources on breastfeeding, human milk, pregnant women safety and health . We have compiled related articles on the topic and have prepared a collection of answers, collated from trustworthy sources, to questions parents might have. We have also produced series of videos offering lactation support.