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Milk Banks in Support of Breastfeeding in India

In India, only 42 percent of babies are breastfed in the first hour of birth and only half are exclusively breastfed for the first six months. However India recently achieved a major milestone when the government launched the “National Guidelines on Lactation Management Centres in Public Health Facilities.” The guidelines are modeled on an integrated system which strengthens breastfeeding education and support, promotes kangaroo mother care, and ensures provision of safe donor human milk for babies who cannot access mother’s own milk.

Ruchika Sachdeva, Nutrition Team Leader for the organisation PATH (www.path.org) in India has contributed an article about milk banking and the new guidelines on PATH’s Defeat Diarrheal Disease (DefeatDD.org) website. You can read the blog here: https://www.defeatdd.org/blog/breastfeeding-and-child-survival and see a film highlighting the valuable work being done to open more milk banks and to invest in milk banks in India. Do also visit the DefeatDD website and read about the ‘Poo Crew’ and what they are doing to break the poo taboo and get people talking about diarrhea!

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