News Tip: U.S. Opposition to Breastfeeding Resolution ‘Sadly Out of Step,’ Expert Says

The U.S. succeeded in watering down language in a U.N. World Health Assembly resolution to encourage breastfeeding

The U.S. succeeded in watering down language in a U.N. World Health Assembly resolution to encourage breastfeeding. Under pressure from the Trump administration, language was removed that would have curtailed corporations’ promoting inappropriate foods for infants and young children. The following Duke University experts are available to comment. 

Kelly Brownell
Quotes:

“This is a deplorable and sadly predictable example of how the U.S. government is out of step with the rest of the world, even with such obvious actions. This heavy-handed move helps a tiny number of companies and hurts many millions of people,” says Kelly Brownell, director of the World Food Policy Center at Duke University’s Sanford School of Public Policy.

“Breastfeeding has multiple benefits to the short- and long-term health of the child. Research on this is rock solid.”

Bio:
Kelly Brownell is director of the World Food Policy Center at Duke University’s Sanford School of Public Policy. He is a renowned expert on diet-related disease, obesity and food policy.
https://wfpc.sanford.duke.edu/our-team/  

For additional comment, contact Brownell at:
kelly.brownell@duke.edu.

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Media Contact:
Deborah Hill
(919) 452-4688; dahill@duke.edu
 

Dr. Megan Huchko
Quotes:

“The pressure to water down a WHO resolution to encourage breastfeeding is another unfortunate example of the current administration allowing corporate interests and political ideology to supersede scientific evidence. As with previous decisions, including the Global Gag Rule and family separations at the border, this will disproportionately impact women and children,” says Dr. Megan Huchko, associate professor of obstetrics, gynecology and global health at Duke University and director of the Center for Global Reproductive Health at the Duke Global Health Institute.

“A 2016 Lancet study confirmed more than 40 years of scientific evidence supporting breastfeeding, showing that more than 800,000 child deaths could be prevented every year with universal breastfeeding. There is truly no justification for the administration's action on this."

Bio:
Dr. Megan Huchko practices as an ob/gyn generalist and specializes in cervical cancer prevention through her clinical work and global women’s health research. Her research focuses on optimizing the diagnosis and treatment of cervical cancer among vulnerable women in settings where health disparities occur. She has been working in collaboration with the Kenya Medical Research Institute and the Ministry of Health in the Nyanza Province of western Kenya since 2006.
https://globalhealth.duke.edu/people/faculty/huchko-megan

For additional comment, contact Huchko at:
megan.huchko@duke.edu

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Media Contact:
Michael Penn
(919) 681-7718; mpenn@duke.edu