Michigan Breastfeeding Network (MIBFN) introduces its newest campaign in support of systems-level change, “Breastfeeding and Maternity Care,” which provides tools for implementing evidence-based, culturally sensitive maternity care to improve breastfeeding outcomes statewide. The newly released toolkit consists of six different elements:

1) A current Baby-Friendly designation map of Michigan;
2) Why WIC for Breastfeeding Families? Flier
3) Baby-Friendly is Good for Everyone flier;
4) A story-sharing platform for hospital staff, outpatient clinics, WIC, community lactation supporters, and mothers to join the movement;
5) The MIBFN System Changer’s Guide to Breastfeeding and Maternity Care for advocates and decision makers; and
6) The MIBFN Position Paper in support of breastfeeding in the maternity care setting for policy makers. To reach the widest audience possible, the Maternity Care fliers are available in Arabic, Burmese, English, Japanese, and Spanish.

In support of breastfeeding in the maternity care setting, MIBFN advocates for the following:

  1. All medical providers should receive and provide evidence-based breastfeeding education.
  2. WIC referrals should be universal.
  3. All birthing hospitals in Michigan should implement the evidence based practices that are outlined in mPINC and central to Baby-Friendly designation.
  4. Organizations should train, recruit, and hire diverse, multidisciplinary care teams that reflect the populations they serve.

Breastfeeding is the foundation of lifelong health. MIBFN envisions a Michigan in which all families receive evidence-based, culturally sensitive maternity care that is centered on reducing inequities in breastfeeding outcomes, with focus on increasing initiation rates and reducing adverse health outcomes for mothers and babies. Standardizing breastfeeding-supportive policies and practices in maternity care systems catalyzes breastfeeding support throughout communities. Especially for the most vulnerable families, breastfeeding is a key intervention in the lives of infants and young children. Diverse, multidisciplinary lactation support improves the health of all Michigan families, strengthens our communities, and builds future prosperity throughout our state.With the “Breastfeeding and Maternity Care Toolkit,” MIBFN hopes to spur change that will positively transform the lives of mothers and their children.

Join the movement here: www.mibreastfeeding.org/birth-justice.

Position Paper available here. System Changers Guide available here.