Australian National Breastfeeding Strategy 2010-2015

5.3 Strategic goals

Page last updated: 15 July 2010

All Stages

Breastfeeding Continuum

Settings

  • Birthing services (hospital and community)
  • Homes
  • Health and community services
  • Public spaces
  • Broader community
  • Workplaces
  • Child care
  • Child protection services

Objectives

  • Encourage protection, promotion and support for breastfeeding as the biological and social norm for infant and young child feeding.
  • Encourage breastfeeding friendly workplaces, services and environments.
  • Protect breastfeeding from commercial pressures and misleading information.
  • Provide appropriate information and instruction to carers of formula fed infants.
  • In difficult circumstances, ensure breastfeeding relationships are maintained, as appropriate, with priority given to the safety and wellbeing of the child.

Evidence-Base
What works best?

  • Partner, family, caregivers and support networks value, protect and support breastfeeding.
  • Support from health professionals and trained peer counsellors.
  • Targeted information, education and social marketing.
  • Paid parental leave.
  • Environments that empower mothers to continue breastfeeding.
  • Breastfeeding friendly environments.

Priority Groups

  • Partners, family members, caregivers, health professionals, support networks and community leaders value, protect and support breastfeeding.

Goals

  • Increase community acceptance of breastfeeding as a cultural and social norm.
  • Mothers feel comfortable and supported in their breastfeeding relationship.
  • Breastfeeding friendly communities, public spaces, workplaces and child care environments empower mothers to continue breastfeeding.
  • Community leaders and role models value and enable breastfeeding and are supported to breastfeed.
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Antenatal

Breastfeeding Continuum

Settings

  • Birthing services (hospital and community)
  • Health and community services
  • Workplaces
  • Broader community

Objectives

  • Provide opportunities for pregnant women and their families to learn about the value of breastfeeding.
  • Encourage and enable pregnant women to make informed decisions about breastfeeding.
  • Encourage families and support networks to appreciate the value of breastfeeding.

Evidence-Base
What works best?

  • Accessible antenatal education that covers breastfeeding and information on support services.
  • Involvement of partners or key support people in antenatal education.

Priority Groups

  • One-on-one interaction and small, culturally appropriate group settings.
  • Provision of antenatal education in home-like or community environments.

Goals

  • Improve the availability and access to antenatal education with information on the value of breastfeeding.
  • Pregnant women establish breastfeeding support networks and are linked to support groups in the community
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ImmediatePostnatal
(Birth to four days)

Breastfeeding Continuum

Settings

  • Birthing services (hospital and community, including early discharge services)
  • Health and community services
  • Homes
  • Broader community

Objectives

  • Provide consistent evidence-based advice to support initiation and facilitate successful breastfeeding practice.
  • Ensure health professionals are appropriately trained to provide breastfeeding support and advice.
  • Ensure continuity of care for mothers between birthing and community services, and breastfeeding support services and networks.

Evidence-Base
What works best?

  • Support for mothers to initiate breastfeeding by placing babies in skin-to-skin contact with their mothers immediately following birth and assisting if needed.
  • Timely community service interventions following early discharge from birthing services.
  • Birthing services have a written breastfeeding policy that is actively promoted among staff and includes breastfeeding friendly strategies.
  • All care staff are trained and appreciate the value and support of breastfeeding.

Priority Groups

  • Culturally appropriate one-on-one, or small group interaction.
  • Rooming-in of mother, baby (and partner) during hospital stay.
  • Health professional training in interacting with priority groups.
  • Special attention to helping mothers of low birth weight and preterm babies to establish lactation and breastfeeding or provide breast milk.

Goals

  • Improve breastfeeding initiation rates.
  • Improve the consistency of breastfeeding advice provided by health professionals.
  • Increase the number of birthing services with documented breastfeeding policies and workplace supports.
  • Improved breastfeeding training for health professionals
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MediumPostnatal
(Four days to eight weeks)

Breastfeeding Continuum

Settings

  • Birthing services (hospital and community)
  • Health and community services
  • Homes
  • Broader community

Objectives

  • Ensure continuity of care for mothers between birthing and community services, and breastfeeding support services and networks.
  • Provide consistent evidence-based advice and support to mothers and their families to encourage the continuation of breastfeeding.
  • Increase availability of breastfeeding training for health professionals.
  • Improve the consistency of breastfeeding advice provided by health professionals.

Evidence-Base
What works best?

  • Supported and timely referral from birthing services to health and community services.
  • Community services facilitate introduction to local peer support groups with trained breastfeeding counsellors.
  • Advice and support from health professionals trained in the management of breastfeeding.

Priority Groups

  • Priority referral to culturally sensitive health and community services.
  • One-on-one, small group, and culturally appropriate peer support.
  • Health professional training in meeting the needs of priority groups.

Goals

  • Improve continuity of care between birthing and health and community services, and breastfeeding support services and networks. Ensure mothers and their families know what breastfeeding support services are available and how to access them.
  • Ensure mothers receive appropriate breastfeeding support and referrals, including access to trained peer breastfeeding counsellors.
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Long Postnatal
(eight weeks to six months and beyond)

Breastfeeding Continuum

Settings

  • Homes
  • Health and community services
  • Public spaces
  • Broader community
  • Workplaces
  • Child care

Objectives

  • Ensure mothers and their families are supported to continue breastfeeding to six months and beyond.
  • Enable more parents to stay at home to care for their baby full time during the early months.
  • Encourage breastfeeding friendly workplaces, services and environments.

Evidence-Base
What works best?

  • Increased parental leave.
  • Breastfeeding friendly environments.
  • Continuity of care and facilitated access to peer support.

Priority Groups

  • Breastfeeding policies that recognise the needs of priority groups.
  • Peer and community leaders and support for role models.
  • One-on-one, small group, and culturally appropriate peer support.
  • Health professional training in meeting the needs of priority groups.

Goals

  • Increase the percentage of babies who are fully breastfeed from birth to six months and continue breastfeeding with complementary foods to 12 months and beyond.
  • Increase the access to parental leave.
  • Increase the number of model breastfeeding friendly workplaces, services and environments.
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