The UN calls to fight more against the promotion of industrial breast milk |UN info

The UN calls to fight more against the promotion of industrial breast milk |UN info

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“The aggressive marketing of breast milk substitutes, in particular through health professionals who trust parents to obtain nutrition and health advice, is a major obstacle to improving the health of new-Nes and children worldwide, "said Dr. Francesco Branca, director of the Nutrition and Safety Department of WHO Foods, in a joint statement.

"Breast milk saves children's lives because it provides antibodies that give babies a good boost and protect them from many infantile diseases," said Dr. Branca.

According to the two UN agencies, the COVVI-19 pandemic highlights the need to strengthen legislation around to protect families against false allegations on the safety of breast milk substitutes or aggressive business practices.

WHO and UNICEF also call on governments to strengthen the legislation around the International Code for the Marketing of Maternal milk substitutes during the Pandemic of COVID-19, and affirm that governments and civil society organizationsshould not seek or accept donations of breast milk substitutes in emergency situations.

"Health care systems must act to strengthen parents' confidence in breastfeeding without the influence of industry, so that children are not deprived of its vital benefits," said WHO and'Unicef.

WHO and UNICEF specify that babies who are exclusively breastfed have 14 times less risk of dying than babies who are not breastfed and recommend nourishing babies only with breast milk during the first six months, afterWhat should they continue to breastfeed - and eat other nutritious and safe - up to the age of two or more.

Insufficient advances

Even if 136 countries of the 194 countries analyzed in the report have implemented legal measures linked to the International Code for the Marketing of Maternal Milk Substitutes and 44 countries have strengthened their marketing regulations over the past two years, legal restrictionsIn most countries do not entirely cover the marketing that takes place in health establishments, estimates the UN.

L’ONU appelle à lutter davantage contre la promotion du lait maternel industriel | ONU Info

"Only 79 countries prohibit the promotion of breast milk substitutes in health establishments, and only 51 have provisions that prohibit the distribution of free or low -cost supplies within the health care system," said the WHOand UNICEF.

Also, only 19 countries have prohibited the sponsorship of meetings of scientific and professional health associations by manufacturers of breast milk substitutes, which include infant preparations, monitoring preparations and growth milks marketed to be used byinfants and children up to 36 months.

The code prohibits any form of promotion of breast milk substitutes, including advertising, gift agents and the distribution of free samples.According to him, labels cannot make nutritional and health allegations or include images that idealize infants preparations.Rather, they must convey messages on the superiority of breastfeeding and the risk of breastfeeding.

"The monitoring and application of the code are insufficient in most countries", according to the UN agencies.

UNICEF/ZavalnyukUne mère originaire de Louhansk nourrit son bébé tout en participant à l'atelier «Allaitement au sein et alimentation des enfants en situation d'urgence» organisé par l'UNICEF à Kiev, en Ukraine, en 2015.

The COVID-19 crisis hinders breastfeeding

The inappropriate marketing of breast milk substitutes continues to undermine efforts to improve breastfeeding rates and the COVID-19 crisis intensifies the threat.

The prevention measures of infections linked to the COVID-19 crisis, such as physical distance, make it difficult to continue advice and support from mother to mother within the community, which leaves an opening tothe industrial milk substitutes industry to take advantage of the crisis and reduce confidence in breastfeeding.

"As the Pandemic of Covid-19 is progressing, health workers are diverted to the response and health systems are overloaded.At the moment, breastfeeding can protect the lives of millions of children, but new mothers cannot do it without the support of health providers, "said Dr. Victor Aguayo, head of nutrition at theUnice.He called to intensify efforts so that each mother and each family receive the advice and support they need from a qualified health worker to breastfeed their children, "from birth, everywhere".

Also, the fear of the transmission of the COVID-19 eclipses the importance of breastfeeding.

"In too many countries, mothers and babies are separated at birth - which makes breastfeeding and skin contact with difficult skin, even impossible.All this on the basis of no evidence.Meanwhile, the baby food industry operates fears of infection, promotes and distributes free childhood milk and misleading advice - claiming that donations are humanitarian and that they are reliable partners ", explained Patti Rundall, of the IBFAN World Council.

Photo : UNICEF/UN065254/Le Président de l'Assemblée générale encourage les Etats à accélérer la mise en œuvre des ODD

Breastfeeding recommended in the event of COVID-19

WHO and UNICEF encourage women to continue breastfeeding during the COVVI-19 pandemic, even if they have confirmed or suspect the presence of the COVID-19.

"Current data indicate that it is unlikely that COVID-19 will be transmitted by breastfeeding or by giving breast milk expressed by a mother whose presence of COVID-19 is confirmed or suspected," saidWHO and Unicef.

"The active covid-19 virus has been detected in the breast milk of any mother with a confirmed or suspected Lacovid-19.It therefore seems unlikely that Lacovid-19 will be transmitted by breastfeeding or by breast milk expressed by a mother whose presence of Lacovid-19 is confirmed or suspected, "said WHO and Unicef.

Women in whom the presence of COVID-19 is confirmed or suspected can therefore breastfeed if they wish.However, they must frequently wash their hands with water and soap or use a alcohol -based friction product, especially before touching the baby.They must also wear a medical mask during all contact with the baby, including during diet.

In addition, women are recommended to sneeze or cough into a paper handkerchief, then eliminate it immediately and wash your hands again.Likewise, women are encouraged to clean and regularly disinfect surfaces after having touched them.

Even if mothers do not have a medical mask, they must follow all the other prevention measures of the infections listed and continue to breastfeed, affirm the WHO and Unicef in conclusion.