By: Haruna Kuyateh
The National Nutrition Agency NaNA in collaboration with Reproductive and Maternal Neonatal Child Adolescent Health (RAMCAH) and Integrated Management of Neonatal and Childhood Infection (IMNCI) wrapped up four days of orientation organised for the nurses and Midwives on early Initiation of Breastfeeding.
The capacity enhancement was funded by UNICEF and targeted 60 nurses and Midwives at Farafenni and Essau Health Directorates in the North Bank Region. The training was centered on Nutrient sources and functions, how breastfeeding works, the international code of marketing of breast milk, and early Initiation of Breastfeeding.
Musa Dahaba Senior Program Officer at NaNA underscored the significance of the orientation, noting that it will help Midwives and Nurses to provide necessary support and guidance to breastfeeding mothers in promoting early Initiation of breast milk.
He thanked UNICEF for their invaluable support in strengthening the nutritional development of children and by extension increasing the practice of exclusive breastfeeding and complementary feeding supplementation.
Balkisu Garber Senior Program Officer at Reproductive and Maternal Neonatal Child Adolescent Health (RAMNCAH) at the Ministry of Health said breast milk protects the child against infection and promotes sensory and cognitive development.
She called on Nurses and Midwives to be vigilant and promote health talk to pregnant women, 3 months before delivery on the importance of exclusive breastfeeding. This will better understanding and enhance confidence building before delivery.
AbdoulieJammeh of Essau Health Region noted that proper screening and seeing patients holistically can contribute to the proper management of cases and diagnosis. He stressed the need for participants to share a lesson learned with staff, to bring about positive changes in the benefits of early Initiation.
Amie Bobb Midwives Nurse at Essau District Hospital, Fabakary Bass Nutrition Field Coordinator at NaNA said breastfeeding is a learned skill nurses and Midwives need to develop to support women in early Initiation and proper positioning of the baby on the breast. He noted the need to work with breastfeeding support groups at the community level for continuous Health talks.