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Health Science Faculty Collaborate to Promote Breastfeeding

From Becky Dunn, Health Sciences:

Did you know that breastfeeding can help prevent childhood obesity and assist moms in losing that stubborn postpartum weight? There are two exciting initiatives in the Monadnock region working to promote breastfeeding.

A community coalition of breastfeeding advocates has formed to support mothers in initiating and continuing breastfeeding. The coalition gathered in May to strategize on how to overcome challenges associated with successful breastfeeding. The coalition is conducting community-based research and will ultimately develop a Community Action Plan to promote breastfeeding in southern New Hampshire. The charge is led by Keene State College Health Science faculty (Drs. Karrie Kalich, Rebecca Dunn and Meg Henning) and Dr. Rudy Fedrizzi (Cheshire Medical Center/Dartmouth-Hitchcock Keene).

The second initiative is Cheshire Medical Center/Dartmouth-Hitchcock Keene and Monadnock Community Hospital’s work toward achieving a “Baby Friendly” hospital designation. The Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative encourages and recognizes birth settings worldwide that promote an optimal level of care for infant feeding. Building on the growing popularity of the new Centering Pregnancy Prenatal Care Model, the clinical staff works to give mothers the skills needed to successfully initiate and continue breastfeeding. Other hospitals in New Hampshire are also working to become “Baby Friendly.”

Success in breastfeeding depends on supportive environments and helping relationships. As family, friends, coworkers, and local business leaders we all can assist with these efforts by supporting public breastfeeding, creating comfortable settings for mothers to nurse, and developing worksite policies that support mothers in continuing to breastfeed so that both baby and mother get the most benefit. If you would like to become involved with our future coalition efforts please contact Karrie Kalich, PhD at or Rudy Fedrizzi, MD at

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