World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA), an ILCA Global Collaborator, has introduced a new initiative and vision for quality, consistent pre- and post-natal care: Warm Chain of Support for Breastfeeding. The Warm Chain strives to coordinate efforts at all levels to provide a continuum of care, from pregnancy through a child’s second birthday. There are usually many people providing care and support along the way to new families or families-to-be. The Warm Chain seeks to intentionally connect these “links” with consistent messaging and proper referral systems so that parents and children can benefit from ongoing support and skilled assistance.
International Board Certified Lactation Consultants® (IBCLC®s) play a multidisciplinary role that straddles generalized support for breastfeeding and allied healthcare. This improves maternal and infant survival, health, and well-being rates over the antenatal, birth, and postnatal periods.
As an IBCLC, there are many ways in which the care you provide can serve to further strengthen the links along the Warm Chain. Empowering parents to achieve their breastfeeding goals; providing accurate lactation information and training; and facilitating the establishment of programs, research, and policies in support of breastfeeding and lactation support are ways you can—and probably already DO—encourage connectivity between all actors along the continuum of care.
Find more suggestions on ways IBCLCs can support the Warm Chain HERE.
Take advantage of new Warm Chain of Support for Breastfeeding seed grants for projects “that focus on either starting a project or strengthening an existing effort to create an enabling environment for mother to continue breastfeed.” Seed grants are available up to $3000.00 (USD) per project. Find out more HERE.
Complete the Warm Chain survey to highlight both the links and the gaps between those links in the current model of care. Access the survey HERE.