Consistent with the WHO Global Strategy for Infant and Young Child Feeding the Australian National Breastfeeding Strategy provides a framework for the overarching governance of breastfeeding policies and interventions in Australia. This governance framework has three components: stewardship, leadership and consultation and collaboration with stakeholders.
StewardshipThe Australian National Breastfeeding Strategy is endorsed by all Health Ministers through the Australian Health Ministers’ Conference, which has asked the Australian Population Health Development Principal Committee of the Australian Health Ministers’ Advisory Council to develop an implementation plan in consultation with key stakeholders in 2010.
LeadershipThe Australian Government will be responsible for providing national leadership and coordination and play a significant role in monitoring, research and evaluation frameworks. States and territories will continue to be responsible for implementation activities with a view to achieving the objectives and goals set out in the Australian National Breastfeeding Strategy and consulting and liaising with stakeholders (non-government organisations, community services and consumers) at a local level. Opportunities will be created for information sharing between all governments and stakeholders to discuss and measure achievements with respect to the Australian National Breastfeeding Strategy.
Stakeholder collaboration and consultationWhile national leadership, stewardship and government action are important, achieving the vision of the Australian National Breastfeeding Strategy also relies on the efforts and goodwill of other sectors and stakeholders. These include health professionals, community, family and peer leaders, non-government organisations, employers and workplaces, child care services, shopping centres, pharmacies, the hospitality industry, as well as the importers, manufacturers and retailers of infant formula.
States and territories will continue to be responsible for consulting and liaising with stakeholders at a local level. Some jurisdictions have breastfeeding stakeholder engagement arrangements already in place. States and territories will also remain responsible for implementing and evaluating breastfeeding interventions, as is the case currently, but with a view to achieving the objectives and goals set out in the Australian National Breastfeeding Strategy.
Information sharing events and strategic workshops involving government and community representatives at national and state/territory levels could be arranged from time to time to assess achievements under the Australian National Breastfeeding Strategy and consider monitoring and evaluation outcomes.