Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Natural Alternatives: Britain pays mothers to breastfeed under pilot scheme

Natural Alternatives: Britain pays mothers to breastfeed under pilot scheme
New mothers in two areas of Britain are to be paid to breastfeed their babies, it was announced Tuesday, under a trial scheme aimed at boosting the practice in poor areas where it is "stigmatised".

Mums in Derbyshire, central England, and its neighbour South Yorkshire, will be offered shopping vouchers worth £120 ($200, 140 euros) if they breastfeed for the first six weeks, rising to £200 if they continue for six months.

Some 130 women from deprived areas will take part in the pilot scheme, which aims to establish whether financial incentives can boost a practice believed to bring significant health benefits to newborn babies.

"The UK has one of the worst breastfeeding rates in the world and breastfeeding rates vary very widely across different parts of the country," said Clare Relton of Sheffield University, which is running the pilot in collaboration with the government.

"Babies who are breastfed have fewer health problems such as upset tummies and chest infections, and are less likely to develop diabetes and obesity when they are older."

A six-week-old baby born into an affluent family in Britain is four times more likely to be breastfed than one in a deprived area, she added.

Britain's National Health Service recommends that mothers feed their babies only breast milk for the first six months -- but this only happens in 34 percent of cases, according to Relton.

Read more: http://www.france24.com/en/20131112-britain-pays-mothers-breastfeed-under-pilot-scheme



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