Breastfeeding with Covid-19

Breast milk is the best nutrition for most babies. It can help protect babies from getting sick. There are rare times when breastfeeding or feeding expressed breast milk is not recommended. Studies show that Covid-19 is probably not passed through breast milk, but we do not know if that is always true. We do know that when two people are close to each other, someone with COVID-19 infection can get the other person sick, like a mother and her baby.

  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the World Health Organization (WHO) support breastfeeding for babies born to mothers with Covid-19.
  • We do recommend that you take extra precautions so your baby will not get sick like washing your hands and putting on a mask before holding and feeding your baby.
  • You should keep your baby in a bassinet or crib at least 6 feet away from you when you are not feeding the baby to decrease the chance that your baby gets sick.  Our staff will show you how to wash your hands and use your mask correctly.  
  • Your healthcare provider will tell you when it is safe to hold and feed your baby without a mask. 

You will have the following feeding choices:

  • Directly breastfeed your baby. You should wash your hands and wear a mask before breastfeeding your baby.
  • Pump your breastmilk. You can have a support person or nurse feed your baby with a bottle or spoon with your breast milk. You should wash your hands and wear a mask before pumping. You can also feed your pumped breastmilk to your baby after washing your hands and using a mask.
  • Formula feed. You can have a support person or nurse feed your baby with formula using a bottle.

Facts about Breastfeeding with Covid-19

Is it OK to breastfeed during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Yes, yes and yes. Your milk fills your baby’s tummy.  It is a living food full of good stuff to protect your baby from whatever germs might be around. It’s the perfect recipe for times like these. If your baby is getting ANY AMOUNT of your milk, it will help protect him or her. The more, the better!

What does the World Health Organization say?

The CDC, WHO, and American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists all recommend continuing to breastfeed during the Covid-19 pandemic. They recommend feeding your baby your own milk, even if you think you might have Covid-19 and if you do have Covid-19.  Your milk is the best possible protection for your baby. The virus has not been found in breastmilk.