Weekly Wire: April 17, 2020
The Staying Abreast: Weekly Wire e-Newsletter is a compendium of news, actions, and resources considered to be of interest or relevance to the breastfeeding field. The newsletter aims to support the USBC's mission "To drive collaborative efforts for policy and practices that create a landscape of breastfeeding support across the United States." Included items are submitted for consideration or identified by the USBC e-news team via extensive online review. Whenever possible, the newsletter utilizes language directly from the primary source of an item without additional analysis or edits. In some cases, the USBC offers additional perspectives through the "USBC Insights," media and partner highlights, and the "News & Views" section. Inclusion of an item in the e-newsletter does not imply endorsement or support by the USBC of an item or organization, unless specifically noted.
In this Issue:
- USBC Updates
- Stories from the Field on COVID-19 and the Infant Feeding Landscape
- USBC Comments to Support Development of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans
- Webinar Recording Posted on Building Strong Breastfeeding Coalitions
- Special Section on Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)
- National News
- Deadline to Submit Public Comments on the Dietary Guidelines for Americans Extended, summarized from FNS/USDA
- Virtual Public Health Nutrition Meeting, summarized from ASPHN
- Article on Baby Food Industry Lobbying, summarized from IBJ
- Webinar on Breastfeeding and Prevention, summarized from GOLD Lactation
- State & Community News
- Pregnant Worker Accommodation Bill Signed Into Law, summarized from Virginia
- Equity Lens
- Social Media Resources for National Minority Health Month, summarized from NICHQ
- Statement on Health Justice and COVID-19, summarized from PPC
- Collective Impact Connection
- Webinar on Community Partnerships to Address Global Issues, summarized from Tamarack
*denotes a USBC member organization news item
Stories from the Field on COVID-19 and the Infant Feeding Landscape
The USBC has published a synthesis document titled "Voices from the Field: COVID-19 & Infant Feeding." As communities around the nation respond to the global coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, the infant feeding landscape has rapidly shifted. The USBC is collecting stories from families, clinicians, and allied health workers to create a public record of the lived experiences of families and providers. The stories demonstrate the impact of the virus, as well as the policy responses that are shaping the lives of families and communities. This document is a synthesis of 55 stories that were shared with the USBC from March 20 through April 9. Synthesis documents will be published on an ongoing basis. Individuals are encouraged to continue sharing stories via USBC's online tool titled "How is the COVID-19 Pandemic Impacting Infant Feeding?".
USBC Comments to Support Development of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans
The USBC has submitted public comments on the 2020-2025 edition of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. A new edition of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA) is under development, and for the first time ever, these guidelines will include nutrition recommendations for infants, toddlers, and pregnant and lactating parents. The Food and Nutrition Service has released a public comment opportunity, seeking input from individuals and organizations to guide the development of the 2020-2025 edition of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. The USBC previously submitted public comments in March 2018, at an earlier phase of the DGA development. Individuals are invited to use the USBC's action tool titled "Urge the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee to Support Breastfeeding" to submit public comments.
Webinar Recording Posted on Building Strong Breastfeeding Coalitions
The USBC has published an archived version of the webinar "Taking Your Breastfeeding Coalition to the Next Level." Presenters from the Kansas Breastfeeding Coalition and the New Mexico Breastfeeding Task Force discussed the practicalities of building a strong state breastfeeding coalition, including funding streams and diverse partnerships. Individuals who are active members of breastfeeding coalitions are invited to join the Coalitions Learning Connection to continue the conversation and share information and resources with other coalition leaders and members. You must be logged into the USBC website to access the Coalitions Learning Connection. Create an individual profile.
Special Section on Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)
As communities around the nation respond to the global Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, the USBC has continued to serve as a communication hub for the breastfeeding field. View the updated "Infant and Young Child Feeding in Emergencies" webpage for key resources on COVID-19 and infant feeding. See the Staying Abreast: Weekly Wire archive for previous compilations of COVID-19 resources and updates. Submit additional resources for consideration via the online form. Highlights from the field include:
- *AAFP: The American Academy of Family Physicians has published a document titled "AAFP Statement on Breastfeeding and COVID-19." The statement recommends the promotion of breastfeeding and parent-infant bonding, and avoidance of parent-infant separation whenever possible.
- ASTHO: The Association of State and Territorial Health Officials has published an interactive map titled "States & Territories in Action: COVID-19 Response." The map tracks the state of emergency declarations, state/territorial COVID-19 websites & hotlines, elective medical procedure guidance, and testing prioritization guidance.
- Breastfeeding Medicine: Breastfeeding Medicine has published an article titled "Should Infants Be Separated from Mothers with COVID-19? First, Do No Harm." The article details the risks of temporary separation of infants and mothers, including the disruption of breastfeeding.
- *CDC: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Center for State, Tribal, Local, and Territorial Support has announced a new noncompetitive grant titled "Supporting Tribal Public Health Capacity in Coronavirus Preparedness and Response." This funding opportunity will strengthen the tribal public health system to carry out surveillance, epidemiology, laboratory capacity, infection control, mitigation, communications, and other preparedness and response activities related to COVID-19.
- *CHEERING: The Center for Health Equity Education & Research in Greece has published a series of online training resources to educate both refugees and those working with refugees on various key topics related to infant and young child nutrition and well-being, including COVID-19. Resources are available in a variety of languages including Arabic, Farsi, French, and Greek.
- The Congressional Tri-Caucus Chairs, composed of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus, and Congressional Black Caucus, have sent a letter calling on the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to work with the Tri-Caucus to ensure there are no racial or ethnic health disparities regarding the testing and treatment of the novel coronavirus. The letter also calls for nationwide demographic data to be released publicly and in real time.
- Senator Warren (D-MA), Senator Booker (D-NJ), Senator Harris (D-CA), Representative Pressley (D-MA-7), and Representative Kelly (D-IL-2) have sent a letter to HHS requesting that all agencies monitor and address racial disparities in the response to the COVID-19 outbreak.
- *MomsRising: MomsRising has launched an individual action tool titled "Urge The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to collect racial data to prevent inequities during COVID-19!".
- GNC: The Global Nutrition Cluster has published a resource titled "Infant and Young Child Feeding in Emergencies IYCF-E checklist." The resource is designed to help countries self-assess the quality of the service delivery aspect of the nutrition response before, during, and/or after a crisis.
- ISRHML Society: The International Society for Research in Human Milk and Lactation (ISRHML) has released a recording of a presentation titled "Live Q&A session on COVID-19 with human milk lactation experts." The presentation describes the latest research and answers to common questions on lactation and COVID-19.
- *HMBANA: The Human Milk Banking Association of North America has published a statement titled "Correcting the Record: Safe Handling of Expressed Milk Containers." HMBANA will continue to publish updated guidelines regarding safe processing of pasteurized donor human milk as evidence about COVID-19 continues to emerge.
- JHL: The Journal of Human Lactation has published an article titled "Safe Handling of Containers of Expressed Human Milk in all Settings During the SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) Pandemic." The article discusses the handling of containers of expressed human milk during the current pandemic.
- Larsson-Rosenquist Foundation: The Family Larsson-Rosenquist Foundation has published a fact sheet titled "Is it Safe to Provide Milk for My NICU Baby if I Have or Have Been Exposed to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)?" The publication addresses concerns about COVID-19 and breastfeeding and lifts up guidance on lowering the chances of COVID-19 exposure.
- NIHB: The National Indian Health Board has published a webpage titled "COVID-19 Tribal Resource Center." The webpage features a collection of news and resources, including upcoming calls and webinars, advocacy tools, and data maps.
- NIMHD: The National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities has published a notice of special interest titled "Competitive and Administrative Supplements for the Impact of COVID-19 Outbreak on Minority Health and Health Disparities." The notice highlights the urgent need for research on the impact of the pandemic and the resulting disruptions on individual and social wellbeing, health services use, and health outcomes for National Institutes of Health-designated health disparity populations.
- TFAH: Trust for America's Health has launched a web portal featuring resources and documents related to the COVID-19 outbreak and response. These materials address actions needed to stop the spread of COVID-19 and better equip the nation's public health system to deal with this and future health emergencies.
- *ZERO TO THREE: ZERO TO THREE has published a policy resource titled "Considerations for Infants and Toddlers in Emergency Child Care for Essential Workers." The document includes considerations for policymakers and advocates designing systems to deliver care for infants and toddlers of essential workers.
COVID-19 News & Views
ASTHO blog: "States Leverage Telehealth to Respond to COVID-19"
*Baby-Friendly USA statement: "Now More Than Ever, Baby-Friendly Facilities Must Protect Parents from Commercial Interests"
*Mom2Mom Global blog: "Pregnancy, Birth, and #COVID19"
*Deadline to Submit Public Comments on the Dietary Guidelines for Americans Extended, summarized from FNS/USDA
The U.S. Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Serve has extended the deadline to submit public comments on the 2020-2025 edition of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans to Monday, June 1. In consideration of new demands on members of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee due to COVID-19, the entire 2020 schedule has been extended by one month.
USBC Insight: The 2020-2025 edition of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA) will include, for the first time ever, nutrition recommendations for infants, toddlers, and pregnant and lactating parents. Individuals are encouraged to use the USBC's action tool titled "Urge the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee to Support Breastfeeding" to submit public comments.
*Virtual Public Health Nutrition Meeting, summarized from ASPHN
The Association of State Public Health Nutritionists is hosting the "2020 Vision & Leadership in Public Health Nutrition" event Monday, June 15, through Wednesday, June 18. The event will be held online and free of charge. Visit the ASPHN webite for details about the schedule, session topics, speakers, and networking opportunities.
Article on Baby Food Industry Lobbying, summarized from IBJ
The International Breastfeeding Journal has published an article titled "Corporate political activity of the baby food industry: the example of Nestlé in the United States of America." The authors aimed to systematically identify and monitor the corporate political activity of the baby food industry in the United States, shown by the activities of Nestlé, the largest industry actor in this sector in the country. Through an analysis of publicly available information, the authors concluded that Nestlé used various corporate political activity strategies which may have influenced public health policy, research and practice in ways favorable to the baby food industry. The authors also state that their findings could be used by public health advocates, the media, and the public to further recognize and pre-empt the influence of corporations on health, in order to ensure that commercial interests do not prevail over public health goals.
Webinar on Breastfeeding and Prevention, summarized from GOLD Lactation
GOLD Lactation will host a free keynote presentation titled "Breastfeeding As A Preventative Care Change Model: How to Affect Change" on Monday April 27, from 12-1:15 p.m. ET. Mona Liza Hamlin will present on how to engage with non traditional stakeholders and make connections where breastfeeding is not traditionally included.
State and Community News
Pregnant Worker Accommodation Bill Signed Into Law, summarized from Virginia
Virginia Governor Ralph Northam has signed into law House Bill 827 and Senate Bill 712. The law prohibits discrimination on the basis of pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions; requires employers to provide reasonable accommodations for pregnancy and childbirth; and creates a private cause of action for workplace pregnancy discrimination. Read the press release.
USBC Insight: Pregnant worker laws help shape the legal landscape surrounding breastfeeding workers. The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission "Enforcement Guidance on Pregnancy Discrimination and Related Issues" states that lactation is a pregnancy-related medical condition. Refer to the "State Pregnant Workers Fairness Laws" webpage from A Better Balance for additional information on state legislation.
Social Media Resources for National Minority Health Month, summarized from NICHQ
The National Institute for Children's Health Quality has published a social media toolkit in recognition of National Minority Health Month. The toolkit includes sample posts and infographics that address racial and ethnic health disparities in infants and mothers, including breastfeeding.
Statement on Health Justice and COVID-19, summarized from PPC
The Poor People's Campaign has released a statement titled "COVID-19 Health Justice Advisory Committee Statement." The statement highlights six priority action areas to ensure an equitable, just, and moral response to the pandemic.
Collective Impact Connection
Webinar on Community Partnerships to Address Global Issues, summarized from Tamarack
The Tamarack Institute will host a webinar titled "Addressing Global Issues Starts with Community" on Monday, May 4, from 1–2 p.m. ET. The presentation will explore the increased potential for impact when governments and agencies partner with communities.