Extra funding to support breastfeeding in Scotland
The Scottish Government has pledged to help support mothers in Scotland to breastfeed for longer through a £2m investment programme.
The funding is in addition to the £2.3m the Scottish Government provides annually to NHS health boards and partners to implement a range of breastfeeding support activities and interventions to prevent or manage common issues, which can affect how long mothers breastfeed.
The investment aims to address the government's commitment through its ‘Diet and healthy weight delivery plan’ to reduce the drop off in breastfeeding rates at six to eight weeks after birth by 10% by 2025.
The announcement comes ahead of World Breastfeeding Week (1-7 August).
RCM director for Scotland Mary Ross Davie said: ‘Investment in postnatal care services and specialist midwives to enable each woman to get the support and advice she needs to make informed choices about feeding her baby are vital.
‘We know that often our postnatal services are underfunded and at times overstretched, so we hope that health boards in Scotland will now be able to use this money to provide high-quality consistent postnatal support for all women.
‘For women who choose to breastfeed it is so important that they feel supported not only by midwives and MSWs, but by their family and friends too. Women should not feel guilty or embarrassed about breastfeeding in public and as a society we must continue to develop a culture of positive support for women who wish to breastfeed and educating the public is key to this.’