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New York, New York, UNICEF, 2009.  p.This report sets out a 7-point strategy for comprehensive diarrhoea control that includes a treatment package to reduce child deaths, and a prevention package to reduce the number of diarrhoea cases for years to come. The report looks at treatment options such as low-osmolarity ORS and zinc tablets, as well as prevention measures such as the promotion of breastfeeding, vitamin A supplementation, immunization against rotavirus -- a leading cause of diarrhoea -- and proven methods of improving water, sanitation and hygiene practices. Diarrhoea's status as the second leading killer of children under five is an alarming reminder of the exceptional vulnerability of children in developing countries. Saving the lives of millions of children at risk of death from diarrhoea is possible with a comprehensive strategy that ensures all children in need receive critical prevention and treatment measures. (Excerpt)
Promotion of WHO feeding recommendations: A model evaluating the effects on HIV-free survival in African children.
Journal of Human Lactation. 2008 May; 24(2):140-149.In Africa, HIV and feeding practices deeply affect child mortality. To prevent mother-to-child transmission, the World Health Organization recommends exclusive breastfeeding for 6 months and replacement feeding when acceptable, feasible, affordable, and sustainable. Determining the proportion and number of children saved with exclusive breastfeeding and replacement feeding is essential to design and implement crucial nationwide policies. Using data on 31 sub-Saharan countries and a decision tree for risk assessment, the authors estimated the number of children's lives potentially saved according to 6 scenarios that combine exclusive breastfeeding for 6 months or replacement feeding with 3 promotion strategies. Among all HIV-negative children born to HIV-positive mothers who die in sub-Saharan Africa per year, 52 315 (9.6%) would be saved yearly with exclusive breastfeeding versus 21 638 (4.0%) with replacement feeding. Promotion support would double these numbers (110 625 vs 45 330; ie, 20.3% vs 8.3%), and with additional prenatal group education, 132 633 versus 54 192 lives would be saved (24.3% vs 9.9%). Wherever replacement feeding is not possible, exclusive breastfeeding with promotion support and prenatal group education would save 1 of 4 exposed children. (author's)
Journal of Tropical Pediatrics. 2007 Apr; 53(2):125-130.Health experts worldwide recognize breastmilk as the superior infant food. Recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics and the World Health Organization (WHO) identify exclusive breastfeeding for the first half-year of life and continuation of breastfeeding into toddlerhood as offering maximum protection from illness, providing a substrate for immunological protection. Data from developed countries identify increasing morbidity and mortality rates for infants who have never received breastmilk in life and demonstrate that infants benefit from exclusive breastfeeding, especially, in areas of severe poverty. Preterm infants, most at risk for morbidity and mortality in developing countries, are identified as needing their own mother's milk for survival. Exclusive feeding of own mothers' milk (OMM) is associated with improved infant survival; however, inadequate maternal milk volume (MMV) often necessitates adding artificial feedings or exogenous substances to OMM. The objective of this study was to compare mean daily MMV for mothers of premature or sick infants in special care nurseries (SCN) using one of three methods of OMM expression: electric breast pump, non-electric pedal breast pump, and hand (manual) expression. We studied 65 mothers whose infants were cared for in two SCN in Africa (Kenya and Nigeria) and were unable to feed directly at the breast. In this randomized trial, mothers were randomly assigned to one of three milk expression groups at birth. MMV, the dependent variable, was measured for an average of 8.7 days. MMV for the electric and pedal pump and hand milk expression was 578 ± 228 ml (n = 22), 463 ± 302 ml (n = 24) and 323 ±199 ml (n = 19), respectively. Data were evaluated using a one-way ANOVA (p = 0.014). The Tukey revealed significant differences (p<0.01) between electric breast pump expression and hand expression but not between the electric and pedal pump or the pedal pump and hand expression. Findings revealed greater MMV with electric breast pumps than hand-expression for mothers of infants in African nurseries. This data has important implications for international policy if exclusive OMM feeding is to be achieved for the vulnerable infant. Funded by West Virginia University Department of Research and Graduate Studies HSC Grant # 2U023U; Non-monetary donations of breast pumps and breast pump kits were made by Medela. (author's)