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Public Health’s work to support breastfeeding earns gold award

Actions promote a healthier community for you

September 2017—In September, the Public Health Division learned it achieved the highest gold award for Breastfeeding Friendly status. With help from the Statewide Health Improvement Partnership, Public Health gave a full year’s effort to preparing the application for this award in order to advance our community’s health.


Health benefits of breastfeeding boost the economy

To understand how community support for breastfeeding contributes to a healthier and wealthier community, consider this: When babies are breastfed, both mother and baby are healthier throughout their lives. This means lower health care costs for families and businesses. Community and government medical programs like Medicaid also benefit (UNICEF and WHO 2012). Families who breastfeed can save over $2,000 per year, and that leaves more money to spend locally.

Breastfeeding Friendly Health Department supports local businesses, families and childcare

To achieve gold status, Public Health had to complete ten steps to promote breastfeeding in the community. Among these steps are services Public Health must provide to local businesses, families and childcare providers:

  • Provide lactation support technical assistance for local workplaces
  • Help local childcare centers access training and information to support breastfeeding
  • Provide mothers with resources to initiate and maintain breastfeeding for 12 months and beyond
  • Encourage local public places to provide a breastfeeding-friendly environment

Find out how Public Health can help you

In addition to providing resources and assistance, Public Health can help your workplace and childcare center achieve the Breastfeeding Friendly award. Get more information on our website here.