[caption id="attachment_41847" align="aligncenter" width="460"] Breastfeeding Bribes: Britain to pay moms to breastfeed own kids[/caption]British Mums in Select Areas to Be Paid to Breastfeed
Great Britain has one of the lowest rates of breastfeeding for newborns in western society and that comes despite the body of science which establishes that breastfeeding improves the health and immune system of babies. The practice even leads to lower rates of obesity.
Perhaps it is no wonder that Britain also has one of the largest obesity rates in the modern world. Now, a government program run by the National Health Service (NHS) seeks to turn that trend around via financial incentives in the economically deprived areas of South Yorkshire and Derbyshire.
Currently, a little more than a third of babies get breast fed for a period of six months. Now, mothers will be offered shopping vouchers worth 120 pounds (~$200 USD) for breastfeeding their infants during the first six weeks of birth. If the practice is continued for the full six month period, a second voucher worth 200 pounds ($340 USD) will be awarded.
130 women from deprived areas will take part in the pilot program, which aims to establish whether financial incentives can boost a practice believed to bring significant health benefits to newborn babies.
"The UK has one of the worst breastfeeding rates in the world and breastfeeding rates vary very widely across different parts of the country," said Clare Relton of Sheffield University, which is running the pilot in collaboration with the government.
"Babies who are breastfed have fewer health problems such as upset tummies and chest infections, and are less likely to develop diabetes and obesity when they are older."
The Brits are known for being circumspect about their bodies and breastfeeding has become a practice that is frowned upon. This deep cultural issue is at the heart of the low breastfeeding rates. It isn't know how effective the voucher system will be at countering this cultural behavior.
Britain to pay moms to breastfeed own kids