US Surgeon General Call to Action to Support Breastfeeding

An Historic Call to Action:

Why is breastfeeding support important?

One of the most highly effective preventive measures a mother can take to protect the health of her infant and herself is to breastfeed.  However, in the US, while 75 percent of mothers start out breastfeeding, only 13 percent of babies are exclusively breastfed at the end of six months.  Additionally, rates are significantly lower for African-American infants.

There is a significant gap between the awareness of the importance of breastfeeding for disease prevention, and the support available across society for the majority of mothers to be successful.

What is a Call to Action and what does it do?

A Call to Action is an instrument of the Office of the US Surgeon General, to elevate a health intervention strategy to the highest level of public policy and awareness possible.

The Call to Action dictates how funding will be directed from the Offices of the Departments of Health & Human Services, and rallies public health leaders, health care providers and the public to alter perceptions and behaviors on a societal level.

US Surgeon General Dr. Regina Benjamin

As the highest ranked physician in the United States, the US Surgeon General has the unique opportunity to highlight public health interventions on a scale that can truly make a difference.

Dr. Benjamin is a Family Physician who understands the evidence: six months exclusive breastfeeding makes a lifetime difference in disease risk reduction for babies and their mothers.  She also understands the clinical protocols that support a mother’s breastfeeding success.

Everyone can help make breastfeeding easier.

The Call to Action appeals to everyone, everywhere, to do what they can to support breastfeeding in the US.  Organized similarly to the BCO website, there are sections for:

We hope our website is a great complement to the work on a local, state and national level to help every mother and every baby experience support with breastfeeding.