Develop programs, provide support, and build awareness that breastfeeding is the optimal way of providing infants with nutrients they need for healthy growth and development.
- Promote evidence-based breastfeeding education and certification programs for medical providers, including students in health care professions.
- Create a statewide resource guide for International Board Certified Lactation Consultant breastfeeding support.
- Provide adequate inpatient and outpatient lactation support for all women who give birth in Arkansas.
- Establish reimbursement for lactation consultation from public and private insurance plans.
- Provide evidence-based education for families to promote breastfeeding with a focus on low-income Arkansans.
More "Baby-Friendly" Hospitals
Encourage adoption of Baby-Friendly guidelines as outlined by The CDC Guide to Strategies to Support Breastfeeding Mothers and Babies.
- Promote the concept and benefit of baby-friendly to all birthing facilities.
- Establish incentives and recognition for facilities that achieve baby-friendly status.
Encourage Breastfeeding in Health Care Settings
Develop awareness and encourage limitations on the marketing practices of infant formula.
- Review and adopt policy elements as they relate to the World Health Organization’s International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes as reflected in the CDC Guide to Strategies to Support Breastfeeding Mothers & Babies.
- Promote these policies to hospital corporate compliance departments and physician practices.
Encourage Day Care Centers to Offer Breastfeeding Support
Ensure support for breastfeeding within child care centers.
- Increase the number of child care centers that provide support for their breastfeeding employees and breastfeeding mothers of the babies within their care.
- Create policies to ensure all child care facilities are breastfeeding friendly.
Community Support for Breastfeeding
Generate breastfeeding support within the community.
- Advocate for community and public spaces to provide safe and welcoming areas for mothers to nurse or express milk for their children.
Create breastfeeding campaigns that recognize the cultural diversity of communities.
- Develop culturally relevant media efforts that include virtual and in-person tactics that will promote breastfeeding.
- Raise awareness of all Arkansas laws that eliminate barriers and promote a mother’s right to breastfeed.
Breastfeeding Support at Work
Work with employers to develop worksite lactation support programs.
- Raise awareness of Arkansas Act 621 of 2009 as well as the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act’s break time requirement for nursing mothers to express breast milk.
- Provide outreach and education to businesses on the positive aspects of breastfeeding for employers and employees via roundtable forums, fact sheets, speakers’ bureau.
- Promote use of HRSA Business case for breastfeeding toolkit among human resource professionals and the State Chamber of Commerce.
- Recognize businesses that go above and beyond what is required in breastfeeding support.
Visit the Progress Tracker to learn about this Priority Area’s objectives.
The Breastfeeding priority is led by Jessica Donahue, RN, of Baptist Health Expressly for You and Becky Sartini, DNP, RNC-NIC of the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences’ Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Their team features members from the following groups: Arkansas Department of Health, Arkansas Hospital Association, and the Arkansas Minority Health Commission.
Want to find out how you can help? Contact us!