Two local hospitals have stopped giving out free baby formulas to new mothers when they leave the hospital with their newborn.
St. Johns and Hillcrest are the two hospitals who have joined 24 other hospitals in Oklahoma who have also joined a nationwide effort to encourage breast feeding and stopped being advertisers for baby formula companies.
”This does encourage breast feeding but it's not discoursing people to formula feed,” said Hillcrest hospital’s lactation consultant, Cheryl Coleman. “We are just not giving you a free sample; we are not advertising for the formula companies.”
Cheryl Bernard is a mother of two. She has a six-month old who she breast and formula feeds because she struggles producing enough milk. She is ok with the hospital’s agenda to push breast feeding because research has proved it is healthier for newborns and has less health risks.
“To me it's not really going to make the decision for a mom whether they are going to breast feed,” said Barnard.
There are already 24 Oklahoma hospitals on this “Ban the Bag” agenda. Hillcrest Hospital hopes more hospitals do the same thing.