More Moms are Breast-Feeding, But Many Babies Still Miss Out – NPR (click to see original article)
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), three quarters of new mothers gave breast-feeding a try in 2010, and mothers are sticking with breast-feeding longer. Almost 50 percent of babies are still being breast-fed at least sometime at 6 months of age. That’s up from 35 percent in 2000. The number of babies breast-feeding at 12 months also rose, from 16 percent in 2000 to 27 percent in 2010.
Many parents don’t realize that breast milk remains better for babies than formula, according to a 2011 surgeon general’s report.
Multiple studies have found hospitals and birth centers often sabotage women’s efforts. For instance, one-quarter of hospitals and birth centers give at least half of healthy breast-feeding newborns formula, according to the surgeon general’s report, and almost three-quarters give breast-feeding mothers “welcome packs” that include formula.
The CDC’s Breastfeeding Report Card released Wednesday says that hospitals should do two key things to help new mothers breast-feed: Let babies “room in” with mothers and make sure mothers have skin-to-skin contact with newborns.