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Provincial seminar on breastfeeding

The Western Cape Government’s Department of Health hosted a seminar in celebration of World Breastfeeding Week on Friday 3 August at the Tygerberg Medical Campus.

This year the theme was “Breastfeeding in the first 1000 days: Relationships matter most”.

The purpose of the seminar was to host a provincial breastfeeding seminar to create a platform to share evidence, to update healthcare workers and stakeholders on policies and progress, and to create a platform for the presentation of research linked to breastfeeding support, protection and promotion.

Following the Tshwane Declaration, which declared South Africa as a country that promotes, protects and supports breastfeeding, the Western Cape developed an implementation plan for the restoration of breastfeeding. The activities in the implementation plan included updating staff and sharing evidence. The first seminar was held in 2013 where the theme was “Restoring breastfeeding as optimal feeding choice for infants”.

Past themes for the seminar, which has now become an annual event, have included: “Breastfeeding in the first 1000 days: A winning goal for life” (2014); “Breastfeeding. Let’s make it work together!” (2015); “Express breast milk to promote, protect and support optimal nutrition in the first 1000 days” (2016), and “Breastfeeding in the first 1000 days: Growing the baby’s brain” (2017).

The 2018 seminar was the sixth seminar presented in the province and was co-hosted by the Department of Health and the three universities in the Western Cape. Seminar attendance has grown each year and the event attracts attendees from across the province and includes healthcare workers (facility and community based), private practitioners (midwives and doctors) and stakeholders in the private sector.

World Breastfeeding Week is celebrated from 1 to 7 August and this year’s theme was “Breastfeeding: Foundation for life”.

What is your opinion on this article? Let us know at briewe@tygerburger.co.za.

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