The World Breastfeeding Week was celebrated - Ministry of Public Health Afghanistan

The World Breastfeeding Week was celebrated

Kabul - August 02, 2017: The Ministry of Public Health, celebrated the World Breastfeeding Week with the motto "Together towards Continued Breast Feeding" at the presence of the President’s Advisor for Education, representatives from UNICEF, World Health Organization, World Food Organization in Afghanistan and other health partners. The goal was to raise public awareness about the benefits of breastfeeding and reduction of child mortality.
"The purpose of celebrating the World Breastfeeding Week is to renew the commitment to protect the lives of children, improve the nutritional status of children and prosperity of the next generation of humanity, because breastfeeding is not only an important step for the preservation of the lives of children, but the prosperous future of the next generation is guaranteed by healthier children." said Dr. Feda Mohammad Paikan, Deputy Minister of Provision of Health Services.
Research shows that breastfeeding during the first hour after childbirth alone reduces child mortality by 22 percent, while breastfeeding continues to play an important role in reducing infant mortality in the first six months of life.
Mentioning an increase in the number of mothers who are breastfeeding their children, Dr. Paikan said, "The National Nutrition Survey shows that breastfeeding has increased in the country since the previous years, as the number of breastfeeding mothers in 2003 were close to 30%, in 2013 it was 58% and it reached 64% in 2015."
The Ministry of Public Health has hired a nutrition consultant in each health facility to prevent malnutrition by educating mothers about children, infants and mothers’ nutrition. Over the past year, more than two million breastfeeding mothers have been consulted.
Training more than 6,000 health workers including specialist, nurse and dietitian on breastfeeding, assessing child’s growth in health facilities, installing signboards on the benefits of breastfeeding in health facilities, organizing regular National Nutrition Committee meetings, at the national level and the prohibition of powdered milk advertising in the country are some of the activities that the Ministry of Public Health has done in this regard.
The first milk of the mother, referred to as Colostrum (called “Fella” locally), has a special type of milk that occurs on the very first days after birth in the mother's breast, which contains large amounts of active immunoglobulin cells, antibodies and other protective proteins which act as the first vaccine or immunization agent and protects the child against a large number of infections.