In a bid to guide mothers down the path of breastfeeding, Mudgee Hospital's maternity ward held a morning tea on Tuesday for World Breastfeeding Week (WBW) to celebrate, support and empower women.
According to the 2010 National Infant Feeding survey, approximately 23 per cent of children are breastfed for the first six months of their life.
In order to boost numbers, Mudgee Hospital are offering a collection of services, such as mother to mother meets with the Australian Breastfeeding Association (ABA), that inform and educate mothers about the health benefits of breastfeeding to both themselves and their child.
We're aiming to improve the rates and in order to do that, we need to improve the support services we give to all women.Mudgee midwife and lactation consultant, Tania Sullivan
"We know that improving breastfeeding rates has a significant impact on chronic illness, ultimately having an impact on the health system."
"It's about promoting breastfeeding and getting all our support services together in a local environment at Mudgee, and improve our breastfeeding rates," acting Mudgee Hospital maternity unit manager, Jackie Hattam said.
"We also want to improve the experience for women."
Tania and Jackie emphasise the importance of ensuring women are aware the information is out there and all in one place.
"Women who haven't breastfed before for whatever reason are able to get information and reach out to services that are there to support them," Hattam said.
It's really good to show that health services are working together as a team so that women know they've got access anternaterly to midwives and services at Mudgee maternity.Acting Mudgee Hospital maternity unit manager, Jackie Hattam
"It's an issue of knowing the support is out there. These things have existed and existed for a long time, but it's important to raise the face of it every now and then to remind new mums that these services do exist," Tania said.