July 31, 2009

Breastfeeding a crucial priority for child survival in emergencies

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In the news:

UNICEF and the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action are commemorating World Breastfeeding Week, 1-7 August 2009, by underscoring the vital importance of breastfeeding during emergencies. Globally, only 38 percent of infants under the age of six months are exclusively breastfed, though research shows that optimal breastfeeding is the single most effective preventive intervention for reducing infant mortality. “Breast milk offers an excellent source of nutrition for infants and, especially where clean water is lacking, helps keep young children safe from dangerous water-borne illnesses like diarrhoea,” said UNICEF Executive Director Ann M. Veneman.

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