Baby-Friendly Initiative

The Baby-Friendly Initiative ensures the best possible care within health services for all mothers and babies, whether babies are breastfed or formula-fed. It includes the World Health Organization Code of Marketing of Breast-Milk Substitutes for hospitals and community health services to follow as best practice.

At Public Health, we:

  • Support your right to make an informed decision about how you feed your baby, and support the decision you make
  • Encourage you to breastfeed
  • Promote breastfeeding as the healthiest way to feed your baby
  • Welcome breastfeeding in all areas of our service – let us know if you want your own quiet space
  • Work to make sure that breastfeeding is welcome everywhere in our community
  • Give you information about how to safely prepare formula, if you decide to formula feed

We do not:

  • Allow formula to be advertised in our agency
  • Give out formula or bottles

How we help you breastfeed your baby

At Public Health, we:

  • Offer prenatal breastfeeding education in-person and online to give you information and the confidence to breastfeed
  • Offer breastfeeding clinics
  • Offer you a home visit if you need support
  • Train our public health nurses, nutritionists and family visitors to support you
  • Check how your breastfeeding is going – we can give you help as your baby grows
  • Talk with you about breastfeeding and answer your questions
  • Offer you written information to take home
  • Show you how to express your breastmilk by hand and/or use a breast pump
  • Help you know when your baby is ready for other foods (at 6 months)
  • Give you phone numbers of people you can call for more help and support
  • Help you understand when your baby’s hungry

We encourage you to:

  • Keep your baby skin-to-skin immediately after birth until your baby feeds or as long as you want
  • Keep your baby near you so you can get to know each other
  • Feed your baby when he or she is hungry
  • Avoid using bottles or pacifiers while breastfeeding
  • Feed your baby only breastmilk until he or she is 6 months old (if you’re told your baby needs other food or drink before this, ask why)
  • Introduce solid foods at 6 months and continue to breastfeed for 2 years and beyond