Weekly Wire: April 29, 2022

Weekly Wire: April 29, 2022

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 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
    • Organizational Action Opportunity: Joint Letter Supporting Federal Funding for Breastfeeding
    • May is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month!
    • USBC Conference Corner: Early Bird Deadline Extension
  • International News
    • Report on Digital Marketing of Breast Milk Substitutes, summarized from WHO
  • National News
    • Webinar on State of Babies Yearbook, summarized from ZERO TO THREE
    • Army Directive on Parenthood, Pregnancy, and Postpartum, summarized from DOD
    • Bill Authorizing Funding for NIH IMPROVE Initiative, summarized from Congress
    • Bill to Exempt Breastfeeding Women from Jury Duty, summarized from Congress
    • Research on Postpartum Insurance Coverage During COVID-19, summarized from JAMA Health Forum
  • State and Community News
    • Bill to Expand Pregnant, Postpartum and Children's Public Health Coverage Passes House, summarized from Colorado
  • News & Views

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

USBC Updates

Organizational Action Opportunity: Joint Letter Supporting Federal Funding for Breastfeeding

The U.S. Breastfeeding Committee launched a joint letter to Members of Congress in support of federal funding for breastfeeding in the Fiscal Year 2023 (FY23) appropriations process. The letter asks legislators to direct $20M to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Hospitals Promoting Breastfeeding program in the FY23 Labor, Health and Human Services, and Related Agencies appropriations bill. As COVID-19 transitions to an endemic phase in the United States, recovery efforts must adapt to a population experiencing substantially higher stress levels, inactivity, and an ever-expanding obesity epidemic. At the same time, our nation's public health systems must address the maternal health crisis. Given the importance of human milk feeding in establishing good nutrition and healthy weight, reducing the risk of chronic disease, and improving maternal and infant health outcomes, we are asking for a significant increase in the FY23 budget to ensure that the CDC has the resources needed to comprehensively address our nation's health challenges. The deadline to sign on for initial delivery to Appropriations leaders is Friday, May 13. After this deadline, signatures will be collected on a rolling basis.

May is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month!

The USBC updated the "Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month" webpage. The webpage features a compilation of resources, tools, and materials from the USBC and the First Food field related to breastfeeding, nutrition, health, and culture. Please share additional resources for consideration via the online submission form.

USBC Conference Corner: Early Bird Deadline One Week Extension

The National Breastfeeding Conference & Convening Early Bird discount registration rate is ending on Saturday, May 7, reflecting a one week extension of the deadline. Attendees who complete registration by May 7 will save $50 off of either member or non-member rates. The preliminary agenda for the three-day online convening has been updated. The USBC is applying for continuing education: CERPS and Dietetic Continuing Education, which are available for a fee of $50 or free for attendees who are associated with member organizations. Attendees must join live during conference dates to be eligible for continuing education, but sessions are available via recording for three months after the event for viewing purposes. Review the frequently asked questions, pricing, and access the link to the revised preliminary agenda.

Exhibit booths and networking sponsorship opportunities are available, including a discounted exhibit booth rate for BIPOC-led organizations. Exhibitors may elect to participate in the full convening, or solely staff their booth and connect with attendees in the virtual exhibit hall, as time and budget dictate. Sponsors are offered five minutes to share prerecorded remarks with the full group of attendees! Reach out with any questions to conference@usbreastfeeding.org

International News

Report on Digital Marketing of Breast Milk Substitutes, summarized from WHO

The World Health Organization released a report titled "Scope and impact of digital marketing strategies for promoting breastmilk substitutes." Digital technologies are increasingly used for marketing food products throughout the world. Although the International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes specifies that there should be no advertising or other form of promotion of breast-milk substitutes to the general public, the Code does not directly address many of the specific strategies used in digital marketing. In November 2020, the World Health Assembly requested that WHO review current evidence and prepare a report describing how digital marketing strategies are being used for the promotion of breast-milk substitutes. This report examines in greater depth the scope, techniques and impact of digital marketing strategies for the promotion of breast-milk substitutes.

National News

MBPSymbol_Plum.jpg Webinar on State of Babies Yearbook, summarized from ZERO TO THREE

ZERO TO THREE is hosting a virtual meeting to release the State of Babies Yearbook: 2022 on Tuesday, May 3, at 3 p.m. ET. The virtual launch will feature ZERO TO THREE Chief Policy Officer Miriam Calderón, Representative Rosa DeLauro (D-CT-03.), Senator Bob Casey (D-PA.), and families with young children who will share their experiences, the stories behind the numbers, and other presentations.

Army Directive on Parenthood, Pregnancy, and Postpartum, summarized from DOD

The U.S. Department of Defense announced a new set of policies related to parenthood, pregnancy and postpartum periods for military parents in the U.S. Army, National Guard, and Army Reserve. Notable changes include: after giving birth, soldiers are exempt from continuous duty events longer than one duty day for 365 days and expanded lactation policy and command requirements for accommodating lactation. Media and member highlights include:

Bill Authorizing Funding for NIH IMPROVE Initiative, summarized from Congress

Representative Lauren Underwood (D-IL-14) introduced the NIH IMPROVE Act (H.R. 7565). The NIH IMPROVE Act would continue to fund the "Implementing a Maternal health and PRegnancy Outcomes Vision for Everyone: (IMPROVE) initiative through the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development through fiscal year 2027. The IMPROVE initiative supports research to reduce preventable causes of maternal deaths and improve health for women before, during, and after delivery. The bill has been referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce. Read the press release.

Bill to Exempt Breastfeeding Women from Jury Duty, summarized from Congress

Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC-At Large) introduced the Breastfeeding Mothers Jury Duty Exclusion Act (H.R. 7558). The bill would allow breastfeeding mothers, upon their request, to be excused from jury service in federal court and in the federally controlled District of Columbia Superior Court. It has been referred to the House Committee on the Judiciary and the House Committee on Oversight and Reform. Read the press release.

Research on Postpartum Insurance Coverage During COVID-19, summarized from JAMA Health Forum

The JAMA Health Forum published a research letter titled "Changes in Postpartum Insurance Coverage in the US During the COVID-19 Pandemic." Using nationally representative survey data, the researchers examined changes in postpartum insurance churn during the COVID-19 pandemic. They concluded that postpartum insurance loss decreased during the pandemic, primarily associated with large increases in consistent Medicaid coverage. These findings suggest that the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which prevented Medicaid disenrollment, was associated with substantial reductions in postpartum Medicaid loss.

State & Community News

Bill to Expand Pregnant, Postpartum and Children's Public Health Coverage Passes House, summarized from Colorado

An amended version of the Health Benefits For Colorado Children And Pregnant Persons Act (HB22-1289) passed out of the Colorado House and has been introduced in the Colorado State Senate. The bill would expand coverage to pregnant women, postpartum women, and children, regardless of immigration status. The expanded coverage includes access to lactation support services, lactation supplies and equipment, and maintenance of multi-use loaned equipment. The bill has been assigned to the Senate Committee on Health & Human Services.

News & Views

FOX Carolina: "Why the national breastmilk shortage isn't affecting The Upstate"

HHS press release: "HHS Awards $16 Million to Strengthen the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program, Announces $9 Million Available to Expand State Maternal Health Innovation and Implementation Program"

Roll Call: "Lawmakers, advocates hopeful for more bills to curb maternal deaths"

U of M Health News: "A surgery resident's breastfeeding story"

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