Health Dept. clears up confusion about breast-feeding initative
The Department of Health wants to set the record straight about the mayor's controversial initative to promote breast feeding.
As part of "Latch On NYC" program that will go into effect Sept. 3, two-thirds of the city's hospitals have volunteered to limit their access to formulas to new mothers, including removing formulas from gift bags given to new moms.
Debbie Kaplan, the agency'st's Assistant Commissioner of the Bureau of Maternal, Infant and Reproductive Health, emphasized that any mother who does not want to breast feed their baby can still do so.
"The decision on how to feed the baby is always up to the mother," she said.
Kaplan said the initative was created to assist the 90% of city mothers who chose to breast feed.
Although most keep using the method early on, they taper off in the subsequent weeks and that could pose health problems, especially if the mother decides to start breast-feeding again, Kaplan.