Moving formula marketing out of hospitals requires a culture change. Many doctors and nurses enjoy giving patients a “free gift,” and don’t appreciate the hidden costs associated with marketing strategies.
Staff may not realized that free samples are linked with earlier use of formula among nursing mothers in randomized controlled trials. Professionals who have never purchased formula may not realize that name-brand products cost a third more than store-brand products, raising costs considerably for bottle-feeding families. Educating care providers and hospital administrators about these issues is the first step toward eliminating these marketing practices. To start the conversation, review our talking points.
This tool kit includes materials developed by the Massachusetts Breastfeeding Coalition and Ban the Bags, as well as letters of support from regional and national organizations.
Whether you are a parent, a concerned citizen, a public health advocate or a health care provider, you can change this practice. Browse our materials for ideas and inspiration, or Download Our Complete Tool Kit for background information, supporting data and educational materials to start lobbying for change in your community.
If you are a hospital interested in purchasing formula at fair market prices instead of getting free formula, download this Formula Pricing Tool to calculate the fair market price, a requirement of becoming a Baby-Friendly hospital.