Breastfeeding Outcomes: A Case Study

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The world health organisation recommends that women should exclusively breastfeed their infants for six weeks (World Health Organisation, 2001) and to continue breastfeeding for the first two years of their child’s life based on the benefits of breastfeeding. However, currently, the breastfeeding outcomes worldwide are not meeting this goal. This essay will focus on the current in hospital practices that impact on breastfeeding outcomes; this essay will also include a discussion on the role of the midwife. The first paragraph will discuss, the current in hospital practices and how they do not promote effective breastfeeding support opportunities for the midwife. Following will be a continuation of the postnatal ward’s practices and how they …show more content…
Their postnatal recommendations are to initiate the first breastfeed within an hour following the birth of the infant (NICE, 2006). In addition, the United Nations children’s fund also suggest that early breastfeeding is essential for optimal breastfeeding (UNICEF, 2015). Thus, to increase breastfeeding outcomes midwives should prioritise breastfeeding in their care to encourage the women to feed her baby as soon as possible and ideally within the first hour after birth (NICE, 2006). The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence in their postpartum recommendations for breastfeeding also suggest that midwives observe the mother and infant for a full feed, including giving advice on when to feed a baby, how to attach the baby, how to know when babies are done with the feed and all the breastfeeding essential information that the women should be educated on (NICE, 2006). In addition when supporting the women on breastfeeding ensure the women is rested and that the baby is calm and showing signs of early feeding (NICE, 2006). To achieve this in the busy postnatal ward, midwives should consider making breastfeeding a priority amongst all the other tasks required on the postnatal ward and setting their shift plan around infants feeding times. Midwives should also organise their shift so that during visiting hours they can do the paperwork or other tasks such as vital signs and fit in the breastfeeding support during other times throughout the shift (Hunter, Magill-Cuerden, & McCourt, 2015). There have been a number of studies conducted around optimal breastfeeding including systematic studies in the Cochrane review. A systematic study on Cochrane review aimed to investigate the impact of support for breastfeeding women and their breastfeeding outcomes. The results of this study are

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