Mothers who participate in the WIC program have increased the breastfeeding rate to 79 percent, according to the Florida Department of Health in Lake County. This is especially exciting because it was one of the objectives in the Health People 2020, which hoped to reach 81.9 percent. The Breastfeeding Peer Counselors and an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant also coordinated care with local hospitals.
“Due to the joint efforts of WIC and Florida Hospital Waterman,, Leesburg Regional Medical Center, and South Lake Hospital, the WIC breastfeeding rates have increased in our county” states Mary Stickney, Florida Department of Health in Lake County WIC Director. “I’m really proud of what we have accomplished thus far and excited about the direction we are going.”
In an effort to integrate the 10 Steps to Successful Breastfeeding into the maternity care practices, Florida Hospital Waterman, Leesburg Regional, and South Lake Hospital are working toward the Baby-Friendly Hospital Designation, a global program launched by the World Health Organization and the United Nations Children’s Fund. For more information about monthly support group meetings, contact Jennifer Bacon at 352-771-5563.
To learn more about the benefits of breastfeeding visit www.llli.org;,or flbreastfeeding.org. For information about the Florida WIC program call 1.800.342.3556 or visit www.FloridaWIC.org.