Following Samoa’s implementation of Becoming Breastfeeding Friendly (BBF): A Guide to Global Scale-Up in 2018, results assessing the evidence-based process have now been published in an open-access article in International Breastfeeding Journal (January 2020). Two key conclusions emerged:
• Samoa now has ‘important policy recommendations that will address current gaps in national level breastfeeding support’ and
• ‘the BBF consultation process can be successfully applied to other countries within the Western Pacific in order to strengthen their breastfeeding programs”.
Samoa was the first Western Pacific country to implement the initiative, following countries in Latin America, Africa and Europe. According to the 2019 UNICEF State of the World’s Children report, Samoa’s breastfeeding rates were among the region’s highest, with early initiation of breastfeeding at 81% and rates of exclusive breastfeeding until six months of age at 70%. Samoa had embarked on a nationwide assessment of its breastfeeding practices and environment in 2017, and has been adopting data-driven recommendations to promote and strengthen breastfeeding practices nationally. BBF is one of the pillars underpinning the country’s efforts.
BBF was developed by the Yale School of Public Health with support from the Family Larsson-Rosenquist Foundation. You can discover more about BBF here, and keep current on related developments by subscribing to our newsletter.