OB/Gyn Nurses giving Instructions on Breastfeeding August 06 and 07 at SMMC


As part of joint efforts to celebrate the annual Breastfeeding Awareness Week that kicked off 1 August to 7 August, the nurses of the Obstetricians and Gynecologists (OB/Gyn) Ward at the St. Maarten Medical Center (SMMC) are giving free instructions to mothers about breastfeeding on Monday and Tuesday August 6 and 7.

Breastfeeding is an unequalled way of providing ideal food for the healthy growth and development of infants.  It is also an integral part of the reproductive process with important implications for the health of mothers.  Breastfeeding should start within the first hour of life.

Exclusive breastfeeding for six (6) months is the optimal way of feeding infants.  This means the infant only receives breast milk without any additional food or drink.  The infant should be breastfed as often as the child wans, day and night.  No use of bottles, teats or pacifiers.

Thereafter infants should receive complementary foods with continued breastfeeding up to two (2) years of age or beyond.
Breast milk is the natural first food for babies.  It provides all the energy and nutrients that the infant needs for the first months of life, and it continues to provide up to half or more of a child’s nutritional needs during the second half of the first year, and up to one-third during the second year of life.

Mothers of newborns should visit the OB/Gyn Ward on August 6 and 7 to learn more about breastfeeding and how breast milk promotes sensory and cognitive development, and protects the infant against infections and chronic diseases.

Exclusive breastfeeding reduces infant mortality due to common childhood illnesses such as diarrhea or pneumonia, and helps for a quicker recovery during illness.

Stakeholders that are collaborating in creating awareness and promoting breastfeeding are Minister of Public Health, Social Development & Labour Hon. Cornelius de Weever and his ministry, St. Maarten Medical Center (SMMC) nurses, SIFMA and the Lisaflor Maternity Center.