Weekly Wire: October 23, 2020

Weekly Wire: October 23, 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​
    • Reminder: Share Your Insights for a Chance to Win!
  • Special Section on COVID-19
  • National News​
    • Innovation Challenge to Reduce Breastfeeding Disparities, summarized from OWH
    • Project to Advance Breastfeeding Support in Residency Programs, summarized from AAP/AAFP
    • Updated Guide for Breastfeeding Families, summarized from OWH
    • Position Paper on Safe Infant Sleep, summarized from ICEA
    • Federal Employee Paid Leave Fact Sheet, summarized from NPWF
    • Public Comment Opportunity on Maternal Health Evaluation, summarized from HRSA
  • State & Community News
    • Georgia Legislative Wins for Breastfeeding Families, summarized from GBC
  • Collective Impact Connection
    • Culture Plan to Support Breastfeeding Physicians and Trainees, summarized from AAP
  • News & Views

MBP-Symbol.jpg  denotes a USBC member organization news item CollectiveImpact.jpg  denotes a USBC-affiliated constellation news item

USBC Updates

Reminder: Share Your Insights for a Chance to Win!

The USBC released a brief survey for USBC supporters to provide input on which breastfeeding policy and practice changes are most urgently needed. Survey responses will also help USBC ensure that you receive the information and action opportunities that are relevant and important to you. You can help by completing our simple survey by Friday, October 30. Your information is private and will not be shared, ever. Respondents will be entered into a drawing for one of ten limited-edition USBC water bottles!

Special Section on 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:

  • CBO: The Congressional Budget Office published an estimate of the budgetary effects of the Heroes Act (H.R. 925), as passed by the House of Representatives on October 1, 2020. CBO estimates that the Heroes Act would increase the deficit by $2.4 trillion over the next decade. The Heroes Act would provide funding, expand eligibility for existing programs, and establish new programs to provide assistance to individuals, businesses, and state, local, tribal, and territorial governments in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Maternal & Child Nutrition: The Maternal & Child Nutrition journal published an article titled "Experiences of breastfeeding during COVID‐19: Lessons for future practical and emotional support." The authors conducted an online survey of breastfeeding mothers about the effects of the COVID-19 lockdown on breastfeeding experiences in the UK. The authors found that some mothers felt that breastfeeding was protected due to lockdown, while others struggled to get breastfeeding support.
  • MCN: The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing published the results of a survey-based cross-sectional study titled "Pregnant Women's Reports of the Impact of COVID-19 on Pregnancy, Prenatal Care, and Infant Feeding Plans." The article includes descriptions of how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected pregnancy, prenatal maternity care practices, and infant feeding plans among pregnant women in the United States. The authors emphasize the need for healthcare providers and policymakers to listen to the collective voices of women about how COVID-19 has affected their birth and infant feeding plans, and their perceptions of changes in prenatal care.
  • Microbirth Courses: Microbirth Courses released a free course titled "COVID-19: The Infant Microbiome." The course includes a recorded webinar and report on crowd-sourced data highlighting how childbirth and infant feeding practices have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

National News

MBP-Symbol.jpg Innovation Challenge to Reduce Breastfeeding Disparities, summarized from OWH

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office on Women's Health announced a funding opportunity titled "Reducing Disparities in Breastfeeding Innovation Challenge," a national competition to identify effective, pre-existing programs that increase breastfeeding initiation and continuation rates and decrease disparities among breastfeeding mothers in the United States. The goal of this innovative competition is to demonstrate sustainability and the ability to replicate and/or expand a program that has proven outcomes to improve breastfeeding rates and reduce disparities. The application deadline is Monday, November 16, 2020. Read the press release.

MBP-Symbol.jpg Project to Advance Breastfeeding Support in Residency Programs, summarized from AAP/AAFP

The American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Academy of Family Physicians launched the Breastfeeding & Lactation Support for Medical Trainees Implementation Project. Funded by a cooperative agreement with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the project aims to increase medical trainees' positive experiences with lactation. AAP and AAFP are seeking nine residency programs interested in implementing or revising their breastfeeding/lactation support policies over eight months (January-August 2021). Interested hospitals should apply via the online form by Friday, November 20, 2020.

MBP-Symbol.jpg Updated Guide for Breastfeeding Families, summarized from OWH

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office on Women's Health published an updated version of the "Your Guide to Breastfeeding" resource. The guide raises awareness of the importance of breastfeeding to help mothers give their babies the best start possible in life. The resource includes information for breastfeeding parents on how to breastfeed, where to find breastfeeding support, common questions, and more.

MBP-Symbol.jpg Position Paper on Safe Infant Sleep, summarized from ICEA

The International Childbirth Education Association published a position paper on safe infant sleep. The paper includes discussion on safety issues, understanding normal sleep and breastfeeding, and a list of sources for evidence-based information on safe sleep.

Federal Employee Paid Leave Fact Sheet, summarized from NPWF

The National Partnership for Women & Families released a fact sheet titled "Having Kids and Careers on the Hill: Here's How." Paid parental leave for executive and legislative branch employees was included in the Fiscal Year 2020 National Defense Authorization Act. Starting on October 1, 2020, all eligible employees now have up to 12 weeks of paid leave in the event of the birth or placement of a child. The fact sheet outlines the new paid leave benefits and addresses frequently asked questions about paid family and medical leave.

Public Comment Opportunity on Maternal Health Evaluation, summarized from HRSA

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration issued a notice for public comment titled "Agency Information Collection Activities: Submission to OMB for Review and Approval; Public Comment Request; Information Collection Request Title: Maternal Health Portfolio Evaluation Design, OMB No. 0906-xxxx-NEW." HRSA's Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB) is conducting a portfolio-wide evaluation of HRSA-supported Maternal Health (MH) Programs with a primary focus on reducing maternal mortality. Through this evaluation, MCHB seeks to identify individual and/or collective strategies, interrelated activities, and common themes within and across the MH Programs that may be contributing to or driving improvements in key maternal health outcomes. MCHB seeks to ascertain which components should be elevated and replicated to the national level, as well as inform future investments to reduce rates of maternal mortality and severe maternal morbidity. The deadline to submit comments is Thursday, November 19, 2020. 

State & Community News

MBP-Symbol.jpg Georgia Legislative Wins for Breastfeeding Families, summarized from GBC

The Georgia Breastfeeding Coalition published a press release titled "The 2020 Georgia Legislative session was a big win for breastfeeding families in Georgia!" The press release celebrates two state bills that were signed into law. HB 1090 updated Georgia's workplace lactation accommodation law to state that employers "shall" provide accommodation, instead of "may" provide. The new law also specifies that break time will be paid, and extends coverage to hourly and salaried workers in private and public sectors. HB 1114 extended maternal postpartum coverage for Medicaid recipients to six months and provides new lactation care and services benefits.

Collective Impact Connection

CollectiveImpact.jpg Culture Plan to Support Breastfeeding Physicians and Trainees, summarized from AAP

The American Academy of Pediatrics published a resource titled "Culture Plan Supporting Breastfeeding Physicians and Trainees." The plan includes information about creating a culture of support for breastfeeding within the medical community and emphasizes support for breastfeeding medical practitioners at all levels of training as a part of medical practitioner wellness. AAP also released Culture Plan Infographics that highlight challenges for breastfeeding physicians and trainees and depict the four phases of creating a culture of breastfeeding support. This Culture Plan is intended to work in tandem with other components of the Physician Education and Training on Breastfeeding Action Plan. Development of the Culture Plan was coordinated by the U.S. Breastfeeding Committee, with authors Jessica Lee from the Center for WorkLife Law and Lauren Hanley from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. The USBC-affiliated Physician Education & Training Constellation and Workplace Support Constellation provided input and feedback at all stages of development. 

News & Views

health.gov blog: "Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Healthy People: Supporting Shared Goals to Advance Health Equity"

HHS press release: "HHS Awards Contract to Improve Maternal Health Data Collection and Drive Clinical Quality Improvement"

The Hill: "COVID-19 and the Disappearance of Millions of Working Women"

Mothers' Milk Bank Northeast blog: "NICU Awareness Month: Folding Chair at the Table"

NCDHHS blog: "Four Local WIC Agencies Win Awards for Breastfeeding Programs"

Washington Examiner: "Over 160 Colorado businesses endorse ballot measure establishing paid family leave program"

MBP-Symbol.jpg ZERO TO THREE blog: "In Spite of It All: State Budget Wins for Babies in 2020"

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