If you’ve been hearing a lot more about breastfeeding lately (Time Magazine’s controversial cover aside), it may be because we are in the midst of National Breastfeeding Month in the US, and the World Breastfeeding Week (August 3rd-7th) everywhere else.
Happily, this all coincides with two big new items for breastfeeding moms and advocates:
NO MORE PUMPING IN THE BATHROOMS
This week a provision of the Affordable Care Act took effect that eliminates co-payments, co-insurance or deductibles on breastfeeding support, supplies, and counseling. This means that insurers are now required to reimburse breastfeeding moms for lactation support and counseling during pregnancy and postpartum, as well as the cost for renting breastfeeding equipment such as breast pumps.
The law also requires employers to provide breastfeeding moms with adequate breaks for pumping, and a private place–different from a bathroom–to express milk for up to a year after giving birth.
BREASTFEEDING RATES GOING UP
Also this week, the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) just released their annual breastfeeding report card, which shows increase in breastfeeding initiation, number of moms still breastfeeding at 6 months and at 12 months.
“Breastfeeding initiation increased from 74.6% in 2008 to 76.9% in 2009 births. (…) Breastfeeding at 6 months increased from 44.3% to 47.2%; breastfeeding at 12 months increased from 23.8% to 25.5%.” ~ CDC Breastfeeding Report Card
JOIN IN THE CELEBRATION
To celebrate and encourage breastfeeding moms, I’m going to be doing daily postings on reasons to breastfeed. Since I’m already falling behind, here’s a fun video created by the people at The Bump, listing 12 reasons why breastfeeding “doesn’t suck”. And even though they wouldn’t necessarily be the first 12 reasons on my list, the tongue-and-cheek catch phrases and closing statement are worth the watch.
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