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Royal College of Midwives comments on new study on breastmilk and preterm infants

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The Royal College of Midwives (RCM) has provided comment on recent research published by the University of Edinburgh.

Commenting, Clare Livingstone, Professional Policy Advisor at the RCM, said: "There is a large and growing amount of evidence about the benefits to the mother and baby from breastfeeding and the benefits of breastmilk for the baby. This research adds to that and demonstrates again why breastmilk is the most beneficial nutrition for a baby. There is also, as the authors say, a need for more research in this area. 

"It may of course not be possible or appropriate to breastfeed a premature baby who may be in intensive care. However, as the authors state, we should be supporting mothers to give their premature babies breastmilk if at all possible and if that is their choice. 

"We should rightly promote breastfeeding and give women all the support they need to breastfeed. However, support for all women is essential, whichever feeding method is chosen, whether breastfeeding, formula milk, or a combination of both. Women need to be happy with their choices, their choices respected and their babies fed safely."

support for all women is essential, whichever feeding method is chosen, whether breastfeeding, formula milk, or a combination of both