Ghana launches National Breastfeeding Week



Ghana launches National Breastfeeding Week

Ghana’s exclusive breastfeeding rate currently stands at 43 percent, representing a significant drop from 63 percent in 2008.

ACCRA, Ghana, September 16, 2021/APO Group/ —

The World Health Organization has joined the Ministry of Health, the Ghana Health Service, and partners to launch the 2021 National Breastfeeding Week celebration under the theme, Protect Breastfeeding: A shared responsibility. 

This year’s event will focus on raising awareness and galvanizing action on protecting breastfeeding to improve public health. The week-long celebration will be marked with a call on stakeholders to make investments and commitments to support actions aimed at reducing   malnutrition amongst newborns, infants, and young children in Ghana.

Addressing participants at the launch, Dr Patrick Kuma-Aboagye, the Director-General of the Ghana Health Service (GHS), emphasized the need for mothers to breastfeed their babies, adding that it remained central to survival, health, and well-being of women, children, and the nation at large.

Dr Kuma-Aboagye expressed worry about the gradual decline in exclusive breastfeeding and assured that the Ghana Health Service and the Ministry of Health were working closely with key health partners including, the World Health Organisation (WHO) and UNICEF with a focus on informing people about the importance of protecting breastfeeding. 

According to Dr Kuma-Aboagye, the significant decline could be attributed to poor traditional practices, which involved giving water and other homemade preparations to newborn babies and indiscriminate advertising of breastmilk substitutes, among others.

Ghana’s exclusive breastfeeding rate currently stands at 43 percent, representing a significant drop from 63 percent in 2008.

In a statement read on his behalf, Dr Francis Kasolo, the WHO Representative to Ghana, reminded policy workers, health workers, CEOs, parents, traditional leaders, and community members of their roles in promoting and protecting breastfeeding.

Dr Kasolo further referred to the Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS), 2017/2018, which estimates that, in Ghana, 52% of newborns are breastfed within 1 hour of birth and 43% of infants under 6 months are exclusively breastfed. However, the target rates for 2030 are 70% for initiation in the first hour, 70% for exclusive breastfeeding, 80% at one year, and 60% at two years.

Optimal breastfeeding practices: that is, early initiation within the first hour of birth, exclusive breastfeeding for 6 months, and appropriate complementary feeding with continued breastfeeding up to 2 years or beyond – are among the most effective interventions to protect children from common causes of death, including complications from prematurity, newborn infections, pneumonia, and diarrhoea.

A statement presented by Ms Ruth Situma, Nutrition Specialist on behalf of UNICEF, recommended enforcement of national legislation and restricting aggressive marking of products that undermined breastfeeding, and further strengthen the consequences for violators.

WHO and UNICEF released a number of capacity-building tools for the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative (BFHI) during the Global launch of World Breastfeeding Week in August 2021. These include a BFHI Competency Verification Toolkit for direct care providers, training of maternity staff in BFHI, and the care for small, sick, and pre-term babies. The tools can also help improve health workers’ skills and competencies to ensure universal access to skilled breastfeeding support.

Short Link:


NNN: :is a Nigerian online news portal that publishes breaking news in Nigeria, and across the world. Our journalists are honest, fair, accurate, thorough and courageous in gathering, reporting and interpreting news in the best interest of the public, because truth is the cornerstone of journalism and they strive diligently to ascertain the truth in every news report. Contact: editor @

Recent Posts

African Development Bank holds second virtual seminar on business opportunities for 2021, with special country on Angola The rise of social media in Nigeria Frank Fannon, former United States Assistant Secretary of State for Energy Resources, will be the keynote speaker at African Energy Week in Cape Town UNDP trains, empowers 525 youths, women in Adamawa States’ nonchalance to 10 million out-of school-children worrisome — Academic The “Civil Society Capacity Building Program” was carried out in Congo with the support of TİKA Alleged Lekki Killings: Nigerian govt demands apology from CNN, Amnesty Int’l Buhari, Turkish President in bilateral talks in Aso Villa US government supports socio-economic development and youth leadership initiatives in Cabo Delgado Statement on the situation in Ethiopia Ethiopia: UN expresses concern as air strikes kill 9 Benzema absent as sex tape blackmail trial begins #EndSARS: 11 states submit final reports on rights violations by SARS operatives – FG Olympic flame arrives in Beijing for 2022 Winter Games Cape Town partners with Africa Energy Week 2021 for continent’s premier energy event Insurance companies to pay N20bn #EndSARS protest destruction claims – Official Protecting the privacy of health data is essential for health equity in Africa (By Christopher A. LeGrand, Rachel Clad and Ruan Viljoen) Lekki massacre is a phantom conspiracy, Nigerian govt insists Indonesia, China begin feasibility study on $560m coal-to-methanol plant Mbappe, Messi found their groove after PSG’s comeback win against Leipzig Bangladesh slams developed nations over decades of climate ‘empty pledges’ Taliban reaffirms commitment to preventing security threats for foreign countries India’s PM inaugurates new airport to boost tourism The International Islamic Trade Finance Company (ITFC) signs a 100 million euros Murabaha financing agreement with SENELEC, dedicated to supporting Senegal’s energy sector Former German soldiers held for planning mercenaries for Yemen Court fixes Nov. 22 for arraignment of ex-Aviation Minister, Stella Oduah Court fixes date for arraignment of ex-Aviation Minister Stella Oduah Paradigm Initiative publishes a short film “FOCUS” calling for the vigilance of citizens to protect digital rights UN needs to play central role in normalisation of situation in Afghanistan Canada-Africa collaboration: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to address Africa accelerating 2021 QSL Gas & Power CEO places natural gas at the center of Africa’s energy transition during African Energy Week in Cape Town Imo community set to honour Actor Kanayo with chieftaincy title FCT lawmaker trains 520 constituents on mechanized farming Inna Ciroma, other aspirants submit nomination forms ahead of PDP National Convention Africa Oil Week will highlight unparalleled opportunities, boost investment and deal making on the African continent Buhari greets ex-Head of State, Yakubu Gowon, on 87th birthday Ancient Hebrew prayer book auctioned for $8m Benzema absent as sex tape blackmail trial begins Banditry: Army operations have returned farming activities in Kebbi – Bagudu Automatic inspection system for imagePRESS C10010VP series enhanced to read variable data, barcodes and QR codes The 26 best young African entrepreneurs selected for the new three-year Anzisha Prize scholarships Direct Carrier Billing Index reveals the most favorable countries for DCB growth in the MEA region Red Cross renovates 12 houses destroyed by floods in Katsina Private varsity partners European private sector to curtail youth migration  –VC North Korea tested new ‘submarine-launched ballistic missile’: KCNA Democrats, Biden negotiate intensively on saving ambitious agenda Micronutrient deficiency: HarvestPlus to develop zinc enriched maize, rice Snake bite: Victims’ survival slimmer as anti-venom prices soar – Expert Kano police arrest suspected fuel suppliers to bandits in Katsina CSCS board renews Jalo-Waziri’s appointment for another 5 years