Education checklist – Infant and young child feeding topics
(To be achieved by all health students and (to achieve objectives)
trainees who will care for infants, young
children and mothers)
1. Identify factors that influence National/local breastfeeding and
breastfeeding and complementary feeding. complementary feeding rates and
demographic trends; cultural and
psychosocial influences; common barriers
and concerns; local influences.
2. Provide care and support during the Breastfeeding history (previous experience),
antenatal period. breast examination, information targeted to
mother’s needs, support.
3. Provide intra-partum and immediate The Baby-friendly Hospital Initiative
postpartum care that supports and promotes (BFHI), Ten steps to successful
successful lactation. breastfeeding; supportive practices for
mother and baby; potentially negative
4. Assess the diets and nutritional needs Nutritional needs of pregnant and lactating
of pregnant and lactating women and women, dietary recommendations (foods
provide counselling, as necessary. and liquids) taking account of local
availability and costs; micronutrient
supplementation; routine intervention and
5. Describe the process of milk Breast anatomy; lactation and breastfeeding
production and removal. Physiology
6. Inform women about the benefits of Benefits of breastfeeding for infant, mother,
optimal infant feeding. family, and community; benefits of
exclusive breastfeeding for 0–6 months;
options and risks when unable to breastfeed.
7. Provide mothers with the guidance Positioning/ attachment; assessing effective
needed to successfully breastfeed. milk removal; signs of adequate intake;
practise observing and assessing
breastfeeding and suggesting improvements.
8. Help mothers prevent and manage Normal physical, behavioural and
common breastfeeding problems. Manage developmental changes in mother and child
uncomplicated feeding difficulties in the (prenatal through weaning stages); feeding
infant and mother. history; observation of breastfeeding;
suckling difficulties; causes and
management of common infant feeding
difficulties; causes and management of
common maternal feeding difficulties.
9. Facilitate breastfeeding for infants with Risk/benefit of breastfeeding/breast milk;
special health needs, including premature needs of premature infants; modifications;
infants. counseling mothers.
10. Facilitate successful lactation in the Risk/benefit; modifications;
event of maternal medical conditions or pharmacological
treatments. Choices; treatment choices.
11. Inform lactating women about Advantages and disadvantages of various
contraceptive options. child spacing methods during lactation;
counseling about LAM; cultural
considerations for counselling.
12. Prescribe/recommend medications, Compatibility of drugs with lactation;
contraceptives and treatment options effects of various contraceptives during
compatible with lactation. lactation.
13. Assist mothers to sustain lactation Milk expression, handling and storage;
during separation from their infants, alternative feeding methods; cup-feeding;
including during hospitalization or illness of cause, prevention and management of
mother or child and when returning to work common associated difficulties such as low
or school. milk supply; coordinating out-of-home
activities with breastfeeding; workplace
14. Explain the International Code of Main provisions of the Code and WHA
Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes and resolutions, including responsibilities of
World Health Assembly resolutions, current health workers and the breastmilk substitute,
violations, and health worker responsibilities bottles and teats industries; violations by
under the Code. infant food companies; monitoring and
enforcement of the Code.
15. Describe what foods are appropriate to Developmental approach to introducing
introduce to children at various ages and complementary foods; foods appropriate at
which foods are available and affordable to various ages; available foods and their costs;
the general population. incomes of local families and how income
levels affect their abilities to afford various
16. Ask appropriate questions to mothers Growth patterns of breastfed infants;
and other caregivers to identify sub-optimal complementary foods: when, what, how,
feeding practices with young children how much; micronutrient eficiencies/
between 6 and 24 months of age. supplements; young child feeding history;
17. Provide mothers and other caregivers Local staples and nutritious recipes for first
with information on how to initiate foods; practise counselling mothers;
complementary feeding, using the local common difficulties and solutions.
18. Counsel mothers and other caregivers Guidelines for feeding young children at
on how to gradually increase consistency, various ages and stages of development;
quantity, and frequency of foods, using potential difficulties and solutions regarding
locally available foods. feeding and weaning; Essential Nutrition
19. Help mothers and other caregivers to Energy and nutrient needs; appropriate
continue feeding during illness and ensure foods and liquids during and after illness;
adequate recuperative feeding after illness. strategies for encouraging child to eat and
drink; local beliefs about feeding during
illness; appropriate feeding support during
20. Help mothers of malnourished children Feeding recommendations for malnourished
to increase appropriate food intake to regain children; micronutrient supplements for
correct weight and growth pattern. malnourished children.
21. Inform mothers of the micronutrient Micronutrient needs of infants and young
needs of infants and young children and how children (iron, vitamin A, iodine, others);
to meet them through food and, when meeting these needs with food
necessary, supplementation. (breastfeeding and complementary foods);
22. Demonstrate good interpersonal Listening and counselling skills, use of
communication and counselling skills. simple language, providing praise and
support, considering mother’s viewpoint,
trials of new practices.
23. Facilitate group education sessions Adult education methods; strategies for
related to infant and young child nutrition preparing and facilitating competency-
and maternal nutrition. based, participatory sessions.
24. Counsel mothers about prevention and Modes of mother-to-child-transmission of
reduction of mother-to-child-transmission of HIV and how to prevent or reduce them;
HIV/AIDS; options and risks of various counseling confirmed HIV-positive mothers
feeding methods to consider when HIV about feeding options and risks.
25. Provide guidance on feeding of infants Policies and guidelines on feeding in
and young children in emergencies and emergencies; appropriate promotion and
appropriate protection, promotion and support; compliance with the International
support in these circumstances. Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes
and WHA resolutions.