DOH celebrates Breastfeeding Awareness Month

By Patricia Erlaine N. Luardo August 02,2017

Moms to gather for breastfeeding event as part of the celebration

The Department of Health (DOH) has lined up activities in celebration of the National Breastfeeding Awareness Month starting last Tuesday.

One of the events is the “Global Big Latch On” on Saturday at SM Seaside, Cebu City. This is a worldwide event wherein mothers simultaneously breastfeed their children for one minute.

Dr. Hayce Ramos of the DOH-7 said mothers and newly married women are invited to participate.

So far, Ramos said a total of 1,500 mothers composed of 1,200 breastfeeding moms and 300 pregnant women have already confirmed to participate.

She said this event is also an opportunity for women who got pregnant for the first time to learn some tips from breastfeeding mothers.

The event also aims to promote breastfeeding to be a part of the norm.

“When you breastfeed in public, it also encourages other women to breastfeed because our boobs were made by God to feed human babies,” Ramos said.

Breastfeeding does not only protect the infant from diseases and help them grow up healthy, it also protects the mother from diseases.

Republic Act 10028, also known as the Expanded Breastfeeding Promotion Act of 2009, requires establishments to provide lactation stations for mothers to breastfeed their babies.

This year’s celebration of National Breastfeeding Awareness Month has the theme “Ugnayan: A Community Protecting, Promoting, and Supporting Breastfeeding.”

This month also marks the celebration of the National Family Planning Month, with the theme of “Kapag Pamilya ay Planado, Panalo.” The celebration will highlight the Family Planning (FP) days to educate the people about family planning methods as part of the government’s goal to achieve the zero unmet need for family planning in 2018.

Dr. Jera Armendarez of the DOH-7 clarified that they are promoting family planning methods not for population control, but for health intervention.

Armendarez said one of the challenges they have encountered in implementing the family planning program is the lack of health providers who will educate the people about family planning.

She explained that some of the health providers that were trained by the DOH suddenly stopped and went abroad to seek for greener pastures.

Armendarez also cited the lack of support from the local government units (LGUs), saying not all LGUs have included the family planning program in their budget.

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