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Introduction to Breastfeeding for Medical Students

This short module is designed to support first year medical students to understand the importance of breastfeeding in the UK.

Introduction to Breastfeeding for Medical Students
  • Duration1 week
  • Weekly study3 hours
  • LearnFree
  • Extra BenefitsFrom $44Find out more

Gain the medical training skills you need around the subject of breastfeeding

This informative course, in a collaboration between Unicef UK and the University of Glasgow, provides an introduction for medical students about breastfeeding, including what is in human milk, why breastfeeding matters and how best to support families.

Gain the knowledge to encourage breastfeeding

You will investigate the benefits of breastfeeding, from improved health for both babies and their mothers, to the strong emotional bond that it creates between the two.

Compare the components of breastmilk and infant formula

You’ll see how any amount of human milk has a positive effect and be able to compare it with infant formula, with the aim to support informed decision-making for new mothers.

Recognise effective breastfeeding

Learn about how breastfeeding works and how to support mothers to breastfeed effectively.

Understand the barriers to breastfeeding in the UK and how these can be overcome

Finally, you will understand why so many women struggle to breastfeed in the UK and what is needed to overcome this.

What topics will you cover?

  • How is human milk produced and what are its components?
  • What does effective breastfeeding look like?
  • What are some of the challenges of breastfeeding in the UK?

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and learn at your own pace. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

  • Available now

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Describe the main constituents of human milk and their function
  • Appreciate the importance of human milk and breastfeeding to human health
  • Understand the anatomy and physiology of lactation
  • Be able to list the key practices that facilitate the initiation and maintenance of breastfeeding
  • Understand the role of the doctor in supporting and advocating for breastfeeding
  • Understand the role of the doctor in supporting parents to formula feed as safely as possible
  • Appreciate the wider social, cultural and political influences on infant feeding
  • Understand the importance of the WHO International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes and subsequent WHA resolutions (the Code) and how it impacts on practice

Who is the course for?

This introductory course is great for first year medical students looking to understand more about the value of human milk, the difference between human milk and infant formula and how best to support babies, their mothers and families with infant feeding.

Who will you learn with?

I am a Paediatrician who specialises in both clinical and public health nutrition

Francesca leads on education, advocacy, policy and the National Infant Feeding Network at Unicef UK Baby Friendly Initiative, her research interests include infant feeding and early child development.

Who developed the course?

The University of Glasgow

Founded in 1451, the University of Glasgow is the fourth oldest university in the English-speaking world. It is a member of the prestigious Russell Group of leading UK research universities.

  • Established1451
  • LocationGlasgow, Scotland, UK
  • World rankingTop 70Source: QS World University Rankings 2020

Unicef UK Baby Friendly Initiative

The Baby Friendly Initiative is transforming healthcare for babies, their mothers and families in the UK, as part of a wider global partnership between the World Health Organisation (WHO) and Unicef.

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  • Access to this course for 3 weeks

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