no more 'free' infant formula in u.s. hospitals !!

My sister Betsy, who teaches childbirth and breastfeeding classes, just pointed out this VERY IMPORTANT NEW CAMPAIGN to ban the "gift bags" of "free" infant formula that pharma companies give most U.S. new mothers when they leave most U.S. hospitals.


clara said...

I`m having a baby next week in the hospital, I`ll let you know if the ban is really happening. I really hope so!

Les Jones said...

Hey, we like the freebie formula! We use breast and formula both, and have learned to finagle for free formula when we go to the doctor.

Anonymous said...

If you click on the right hand side that saids bag free hospitals it lists the hospitals involved.

Good for them! I personally think everyone should breastfeed if they produce the milk!

Lisa said...

Uh, no one is saying people can't go out and buy formula. I don't think that not giving out a few days' worth of free formula is making parents "jump thru hoops." If they want to formula feed, they're going to have to go out and buy it eventually anyway.

All this campaign is trying to do is keep formula companies from taking advantage of the fact that giving free samples decreases the breastfeeding rate. Those companies aren't giving out free formula out of the goodness of their hearts.

Betsy Tant said...

There will still be PLENTY of free formula available to moms who want it. Most of the baby magazines have numbers to call to get it shipped directly to your house and most times that you sign up for a baby related item your info goes into a big database to which the formula companies have access. Hospitals will still have formula available for moms who choose not to breastfeed. The goals are 1.to not offer formula to moms who don't specifically ask for it 2.to not provide incentives to medical professionals to push formula. This is not about making things difficult for moms who choose to feed formula. It is about helping moms who choose to breastfeed be more successful. Betsy

Anonymous said...

oh please. the guilt and shame they made me go thru to sign up for the formula and other stuff to go with it actually upped my anxiety and helped me to not breastfeed. that and the refusal to admit that your baby can nearly starve if you dont stay on top of things. in an effort to "Promote" breastfeeding these nimbos never mention what can go wrong so guess what, it takes you by surprise. seven years later my second child..I brought up what had happened in the breastfeeding class I took prior to his birth and the idiot "breastfeeding promotor" or whatever title she calls herself got all flustered and brushed it off. they dont like to admit that it can be shaky the first couple of weeks and prepare people for that. which I think decreases breastfeeding rates, if increasing them is what they want. as for the free samples. all along with number one I figured I would give it to the food bank if I didnt use it and I didnt expect to either. it was the failures of the so called "lactation experts" NOT the presence of formula in my home that caused the problems. all the formula did was tide me over till I could get to the store. I got the formula with the second one, despite the frowns of the lactivists I knew. had it sitting right on the counter too. looking at it every day and saying nah, I will hang in there. however I was very mindful that I wasnt about to jeopardize my babies life for some stupid breastfeeding. he did nurse by the way, for two and a half years. and I gave the samples to yes, the food bank.

Anonymous said...

So what you're saying is that you think a national heath policy should be created because of your personal experience and failure to get accurate help?

Breastfeeding is learned, we do not live in a breastfeeding culture so women in America really need someone to help them learn how to nurse after the birth. Most women find others to help them to get over the initial myriad of difficulties new motherhood presents; one of them is frequently difficulty with breastfeeding. If you did not have formula in the corner of the room, you might have tried a little harder to get someone to give you help along with accurate information to succeed. Instead, you are left with a lingering feeling of failure and bitterness lashing out at others who figured out how to overcome the initial problems most new moms have with breastfeeding.

Have you considered instead, you can use your anger and redirect it to create change so other women do not have to fail as you did at breastfeeding? With support, and accurate information you would have done better.

Les Jones said...

Betsy, I'm all for breastfeeding, but it isn't like mothers who don't get it are magically going to start breastfeeding, much less successfully breastfeeding. If the hospital isn't telling moms about breastfeeding and showing them how to do it (as they did for us) I don't see those moms breastfeeding just because they didn't get a free can of formula.

"There will still be PLENTY of free formula available to moms who want it. Most of the baby magazines have numbers to call to get it shipped directly to your house and most times that you sign up for a baby related item your info goes into a big database to which the formula companies have access."

Agreed, but moms won't get that formula if they don't know about those offers, just like they're not likely to know about breastfeeding if they're not informed about the benefits and techniques.

I don't know. Sometimes the pro-breastfeeding arguments seem to spend less time on the benefits of breastfeeding and more time trying to tackle Big Formula. I get breastfeeding, but I don't understand why formula has to be vilified. We use both. What's the big deal?

Anonymous said...

Exactly. Both are fine. Get on the softdrinks at school bandwagon. That is a bigger problem.