C-section puts babies at risk of death & diseases –WHO

Infants delivered through caesarean section are at higher risk of death and disease, Unicef and WHO say in a new report. This is because ...

A pregnant woman wait to deliver at a hospital in Mombasa. /FILE

Infants delivered through caesarean section are at higher risk of death and disease, Unicef and WHO say in a new report.

This is because they are not breastfed within the first hour of life.
Statistics from the report show 75 per cent of infants delivered through C-section do not get a chance to breastfeed in the first hour of life compared to 40 per cent of those born through vaginal delivery.

Newborns who breastfeed in the first hour of life are significantly more likely to survive, the report indicates.
The report named ‘Capture the Moment, Early Initiation to Breastfeeding’ was released on July 30. It indicates that contact between mother and baby protects newborns with “good bacteria” from the mother’s body, which is a critical step in developing the baby’s gut health and immunity. 


Unicef executive director Henrietta Fore said in breastfeeding timing is everything and could decide whether the baby survives or not.
“Each year, millions of newborns miss out on the benefits of early breastfeeding and the reasons are things we can change. Mothers simply don’t receive enough support to breastfeed within those crucial minutes after birth, even from medical personnel at health facilities,” Fore said in a press statement on Monday.
Breastfeeding rates within the first hour after birth are highest in Eastern and Southern Africa at 65 per cent and lowest in East Asia and the Pacific at 32 per cent, the report says.
Globally three in every five children are not breastfed within the first hour of life, putting them at risk of death and disease, it says.

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