Newswise — Chicago and Frauenfeld, 4 August 2020 – Rush University Medical Center, supported by the Family Larsson-Rosenquist Foundation, has produced a series of educational videos and mother-focused information sheets to train healthcare professionals in mothers’ own milk (MOM) feeding practices in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) worldwide.

Called PROVIDE – A Training Compendium on Providing Mothers’ Own Milk in NICU Settings, it combines decades of research with clinical practice, and covers the essentials of MOM feeding and lactation care that are specific to NICUs. Included will be:

  • Over 40 videos featuring staff, infants and families in live NICU settings. Ranging from mouth care with MOM to positioning a preterm infant for breastfeeding, the videos depict innovative NICU approaches to improving the use of MOM. Videos are accompanied by evidence as well as clear step by step guidance.
  • Over 20 information sheets appropriate for NICU staff, trainers and families. From colostrum to the impact of MOM on preterm infant brain development, each topic is presented in a fact-based, straightforward manner with illustrative artwork.

MOM feeding is a lifesaving intervention for preterm infants whose organs and systems are not as developed as those of full-term infants. MOM helps to develop healthy lungs, brains, intestines, digestive and immune systems, protecting these infants from serious and costly health complications.

“Mothers’ own milk is one of the most clinically effective, accessible interventions we have for vulnerable infants,” says Dr Paula P. Meier, PROVIDE Training Compendium creator and Professor of Pediatrics and Nursing, Rush University Medical Center. “Premature infants that receive more MOM over longer periods in the NICU have a reduced risk of potentially preventable complications that are life-threatening and costly.”

The benefits of MOM feeding also extend beyond the short term and into adulthood. Breastmilk has been shown to provide lifelong preventative benefits against chronic illnesses including allergy and asthma, diabetes and heart disease.

“Breastmilk is a vital element of every child’s first 1,000 days, particularly for vulnerable or preterm infants, and its benefits extend well into adulthood,” says Janet Prince, Registered Midwife, IBCLC and Head of Relationship Management, Family Larsson-Rosenquist Foundation. “Breastfeeding is also linked to better nutrition, health and greater well-being for children and mothers, which directly contributes the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda.”

“Rush is a pioneer in mothers’ own milk feeding for preterm infants, thus we are delighted to have supported them in the creation of the PROVIDE Training Compendium,” says Göran Larsson, Chairman of the Board, Family Larsson-Rosenquist Foundation. “It is our hope that by compiling this knowledge in a comprehensive resource and making it freely available to all healthcare professionals, MOM feeding will become common practice for every infant, and notably for those in low resource settings where there is potential for profound impact.”

Fully digitalised for global dissemination, the PROVIDE Training Compendium can be locally adapted with translations and subtitles. Healthcare professionals can access it in English at no cost on LactaHub – a resource for evidence-based breastfeeding intelligence.

Please join LactaHub and Dr Meier for a tour of the PROVIDE Training Compendium on 6 August 2020 (8:00-9:30 am Chicago, USA/2:00-3:30 pm Oxford, UK) by registering here on Zoom (max. 500 participants). The webinar will also be streamed live on The Global Health Network Facebook page. Questions can be asked via Zoom or Facebook Messenger.

The PROVIDE Training Compendium is intended for use by health professionals in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). All parts of this package are primarily for training purposes and for additional information to be given to parents by NICU health professionals. The PROVIDE  Training Compendium, provided by Rush University Medical Center, is not intended for use by parents or private persons without medical education and we do not raise any claim to completeness of the resources.


About RUSH

Rush University System for Health (RUSH) is an academic health system whose mission is to improve the health of the individuals and diverse communities it serves through the integration of outstanding patient care, education, research and community partnerships. RUSH comprises Rush University Medical Center, Rush University, Rush-Copley Medical Center and Rush Oak Park Hospital, as well as numerous outpatient care facilities. Rush University, with more than 2,500 students, is a health sciences university that comprises Rush Medical College, the College of Nursing, the College of Health Sciences and the Graduate College. The 72-bed RUSH NICU was home to the former Rush Mothers’ Milk Club program (1996-2019), an evidence-based program of research and practice that prioritized removing barriers to high-dose, long exposure to mothers’ own milk for NICU infants. A key tenet of this program was sharing the science of mothers’ own milk with NICU families, a strategy that informed the project with the Family Larsson-Rosenquist Foundation.


About the Family Larsson-Rosenquist Foundation

The Family Larsson-Rosenquist Foundation was established in 2013, born from the vision of a world in which every child is granted an optimum start in life through the benefits of breastmilk. Based in Frauenfeld, Switzerland, it is one of the world’s only philanthropic foundations dedicated entirely to supporting and promoting breastfeeding and breastmilk.

Backed by sound science, its objective is to drive changes in practice that will increase rates of breastfeeding, and improve the health of mothers and children worldwide. It furthers this objective by contributing to the long-term discovery, dissemination and deployment of evidence-based knowledge. Together with a global network of leading experts, it is creating publicly available, sustainable resources and educational tools that help healthcare providers, governments, communities and families overcome obstacles and achieve their breastfeeding goals.