Cloudnine hospitals commences breastfeeding week


Date: 29th July, 2016

Spokesperson: Dr. R. Kishore Kumar, Founder and Chairman of Cloudnine Group of Hospitals , Dr. Asha Benkappa, National Neonatology Forum, Karnataka Chapter, Dr.Sheela C N, President, BSOG (Bangalore Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology)

Bengaluru: Cloudnine, one of the specialty mother and child care hospitals, commenced breastfeeding week celebrations in the city on Friday ahead of World Breastfeeding Week 2016.

At a roundtable held in Bengaluru, representatives from Cloudnine Hospitals, National Neonatology Forum of India, Karnataka Chapter and Bengaluru Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology shared valuable insights on the importance of breastfeeding and the right breastfeeding practices. Dr. R. Kishore Kumar, Founder and Chairman of Cloudnine also made an announcement about an important initiative that the hospital is planning to undertake with some of the leading corporates in India to facilitate a breastfeeding-friendly culture in organizations.

At the roundtable, Cloudnine disclosed the results of a pilot study it had conducted on the breastfeeding practices of mothers who delivered at the three Cloudnine facilities in Bengaluru. From November 2015 to September 2015, they recorded the total number of mothers who exclusively breastfed their children for the first six months post birth. The study results indicated that an average of only 67 percent of mothers exclusively breastfed their children for six months post-delivery.

Under its public-private-partnership initiatives, during the World Breastfeeding Week from August 1-7, 2016, Cloudnine will depute one qualified nurse and one lactation consultant in 13 urban Primary Health Centres in Bengaluru, Chennai, Mumbai and Gurgaon, who will counsel caregivers with necessary information on breastfeeding, complementary feeding, breast care, nutrition for nursing women and address any discomfort they are facing in breastfeeding.

Dr. Kishore Kumar, Founder and Chairman of Cloudnine Hospitals said, “It is critical for all expecting mothers to be made aware that initiation of breastfeeding should begin immediately after childbirth, preferably within one hour for a number of reasons. Mothers benefit from early suckling because it stimulates breast milk production and facilitates the release of oxytocin, which helps the contraction of the uterus and reduces postpartum blood loss. The first breast milk (colostrum) is also highly nutritious and has antibodies that protect the newborn from diseases.”

Dr. Asha Benkappa, National Neonatology Forum, Karnataka Chapter said that while breastfeeding practices in India have improved over the last decade but yet to achieve optimum exclusive breastfeeding rates. “India scored 78 out of 150 in 2015 World Breastfeeding Trends Initiative (WBTi) assessment, a slight improvement since the last assessment in 2012 in which we scored 74 out of 150. From a policy perspective, India requires a clear national policy on Infant and Young Child Feeding (IYCF) with corresponding adequate budgets. Enforcement of the Infant Milk Substitutes (IMS) Act needs to be more robust,” Dr Asha Benkappa said.

She said that in rural areas, trained health professionals and community workers like ASHAs and Anganwadi Workers have received training on how to educate mothers on the optimal breastfeeding practices in many regions, but this practice needs to be expanded and scaled-up.

Dr. Sheela C N, President, BSOG (Bangalore Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology), said that there was a need to increase the maternity leave to 24 weeks to all the women employees working under every set up. “When implemented, this move is going to tremendously improve breastfeeding rates in the country while also lowering infant mortality and reducing malnutrition, diarrhea and other diseases in infants,” Dr Sheela said.

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