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Breastfeeding – the best option for infants in times of disaster

Breastfeeding – the best option for infants in times of disaster

At all times, breastfeeding and continued breastfeeding should be promoted, protected and supported but most especially during disasters and emergencies.  As a general rule, the DOH prescribes the feeding options for infants and young children in difficult circumstance:  (1)  breastfeeding is the first and best option for infants, (2) expressed breastmilk, fed by cup; (3) breastfeeding from healthy wet nurse; and (4) human milk from milk bank, fed by cup.  Should these options become unavailable, the last option is to feed by cup infant formula (unlabeled) which should be only under the supervision of health and nutrition workers and prepared centrally.

The national government, local government units, civil society and other stakeholders should abide by and implement these policies for the welfare of affected populations specifically infants and young children. Health workers are reminded to not accept and distribute breastmilk substitutes. (Source: milk code.philippines.org.