More than three-quarters of new mothers in the United States breastfeed their infants, but not for as long as is recommended, according to the latest status report.
Data from the US National Immunization Surveys, which have included breastfeeding information since 2001, show that 79% of mothers breastfed their newborns in 2011. About half of infants born that year were breastfeeding at age 6 months but only 27% were doing so at age 12 months. Healthy People 2020, the nation’s health priorities, set goals for 81.9% of infants to start breastfeeding, 60.6% to continue until age 6 months, and 34.1% to breastfeed until age 1 year. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends breastfeeding for a newborn’s first year of life (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Breastfeeding Report Card United States/2014. http://www.cdc.gov/breastfeeding/data/reportcard.htm [accessed August 15, 2014]).
US Breastfeeding Rates Fall Short of National Goals. JAMA. 2014;312(11):1090. doi:10.1001/jama.2014.11160