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Breastfeeding support

This question was posted the Infant and young child feeding interventions forum area and has 9 replies.

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Chantal Autotte Bouchard

Health Advisor

Normal user

21 Feb 2024, 14:15

Good morning,

In one of the countries where we operate, we promote breastfeeding. According to specific criteria, we provide manual breast pumps to mothers in need. At the same time, we offer comprehensive advice on hygiene, milk storage, and more, thanks to our breastfeeding specialists.

We want to develop Standard Operating Procedures (SoPs) and communication materials suitable for this initiative, to distribute, present and share. Does anyone have such documents?


Bindi Borg

IYCF researcher and practitioner

Normal user

29 Feb 2024, 13:31

Hi Chantal

The Operational Guidance on Infant and Young Child Feeding in Emergencies (OG-IFE), states that the use of breast pumps should only be considered when their use is vital and where it is possible to clean them adequately, such as in clinical settings. In terms of hygiene, pumps are similar to feeding bottles and teats which are discouraged due to high risk of contamination and difficulty in cleaning.

Manual/hand pumping into a bowl is far preferable in terms of hygiene, and possibly also in terms of facilitating the milk ejection reflex.

I would be very cautious in the assessment of need.  Things to consider are whether mothers are separated from their babies (eg. at work) for long stretches (4-8 hours).

Feel free to contact me on if you want to discuss.  



Marie-France Lalancette

Nutrition sans Frontieres

Normal user

29 Feb 2024, 14:05

Hello Chantal, In which country do you work?

Nutrition sans Frontières has a head office in Canada, one in France and representatives in Africa. I can put you in touch with the appropriate people to help you with your search if you wish, for documents in the language you prefer.

Chantal Autotte Bouchard

Health Advisor

Normal user

29 Feb 2024, 17:41

Dear both, thank you Bindi & Marie-france for your feedback. I know it's a tricky question and I know the IFE very well. I'll be in touch with you both, but I'm already in contact with another IFE/IYCF & BMS specialist. This is a very specific context and a one-off action. Thanks again for your feedback.

Maryse Arendt

Lactation consultant IBCLC , BLL Luxembourg

Normal user

14 Mar 2024, 19:17

hello Chantal

I fully support the answer of Bindi Borg. Breastpumps are difficult to clean and using cups is more hyginic than bottles. Learning how to hand express is a technique that can be used everywhere and bear no risk of having parts of the pumps no lomger functioning well to create a vacuum. Moreover the one size funnels on manual hand pumps might not fit all breasts/ nipples and present a risk of tissue damage on the breast.

Feel free to contact me to further discuss, French is OK too 

Chantal Autotte Bouchard

Health Advisor

Normal user

15 Mar 2024, 12:51

Dear Maryse,

I appreciate your recommendation, and I'm already in touch with a lactation specialist. I understand the risks involved, and I recognize that this is a sensitive topic. The context in which this occurs allows for good hygiene practices and support from a lactation specialist. Additionally, it has only happened a few times over the last year. However, we wanted to gather perspectives from others to ensure that we frame the situation appropriately from our standpoint as well.

Thanks a lot


Rosemary Otiende


Normal user

21 Mar 2024, 07:11

Dear Chantal

This is a good initiative and in addition to training mothers to use the breastpumps it would be good that in your SOP you include training of all the mothers to use handexpression since its a skill that must be taught and with very good results if done well.





Normal user

21 Mar 2024, 10:59

If your intervention is already systematic (distributed to all targeted mothers) this means that you have assessed the situation of your beneficiaries and precisely identified their needs before the start of the action. Despite everything, reassure yourself with a checklist (favorable environment) that use will be correct and will not harm children in terms of hygiene.

Chantal Autotte Bouchard

Health Advisor

Normal user

22 Mar 2024, 10:51

Dear Rosemary,

Yes, indeed, this is part of the process, as this option (provide manual breast pump) is the last one considered.

Thank you for your feedback.

Best regards


Chantal Autotte Bouchard

Health Advisor

Normal user

22 Mar 2024, 10:56

Dear Abel,

Thank you for your understanding. The distribution process is not systematic and is determined based on specific criteria as mention, including the capacity for washing and managing all aspects effectively. However, as mentioned earlier, we are proceeding cautiously, and this initiative only involves 4 mothers over the last two years. Additionally, it's worth noting that the country's nutrition sector has recently taken the lead on this matter.

Best regards,


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