FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Flushing, N.Y., Aug. 4, 2014 – New York Hospital Queens (NYHQ) has launched an initiative to increase breastfeeding rates throughout Queens, with a strong emphasis on the Chinese community. The initiative will educate mothers about the benefits of breastfeeding for themselves and their babies, inform them about breastfeeding support programs, and connect them with NYHQ medical experts. The initiative was announced on Friday at a press conference with the Flushing Chinese Business Association (FCBA) and is tied to World Breastfeeding Week 2014 (Aug.1-7).
Research has shown that babies who exclusively receive breast milk for the first six months of life are less likely to develop a wide range of chronic and acute diseases. Breastfeeding mothers benefit as well with a decreased risk of breast and ovarian cancer.
Nearly half of the approximately 4,000 births each year at NYHQ are to Asian women. Asian infants have the second lowest rates of exclusive in-hospital breastfeeding in New York State – according to the most recent data from the New York State Department of Health, 29.6 percent of Asian/Pacific-Islander non-Hispanic babies were exclusively breastfed in the delivery hospital, as compared to 55.5 percent of white/non-Hispanic babies.
Queens County has a significantly lower rate of exclusive in-hospital breastfeeding than New York State – according to the most recent data from the New York State Department of Health, 25 percent of Queens babies were exclusively breastfed in the delivery hospital, as compared to 40.6 percent in New York State overall.
Elements of the initiative include:
• Free Breastfeeding Symposium – Thursday, Aug. 7, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., at NYHQ’s Lang Auditorium (56-45 Main St., Flushing, N.Y. 11355) – for community members and medical professionals.
• NYHQ Hospitality Tent for Breastfeeding Mothers at the 24th Annual Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival – Saturday, Aug.9 and Sunday, Aug. 10, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days, at Flushing Meadows-Corona Park.
• The “Breastfeeding Friendly Corporate Partners” program. Restaurants and businesses will be listed on NYHQ’s website as breastfeeding friendly facilities, if they:
• Free Weekly Breastfeeding Support Group – Thursdays (except holidays), noon to 1 p.m. at NYHQ’s Theresa Lang Children’s Center (entrance: 141st St. between 56th Ave. & Booth Memorial Ave.)
NYHQ’s breastfeeding initiative resulted in part from a recent community survey that identified increasing exclusive breastfeeding among Chinese mothers while in the delivery in-hospital, as an objective.
New York Hospital Queens is a member of the NewYork-Presbyterian Healthcare System and an affiliate of the Weill Medical College of Cornell University. For more information, visit www.nyhq.org.
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Click here (or copy and paste http://tinyurl.com/n4pzlkr into your browser) to watch a lecture (in Mandarin) from March 15, 2014 in the 2014 Healthy Chinese Community Lecture Series, in which Mei Wu, lactation specialist, spoke about breastfeeding.