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Table 2 Examples of media messages on infant feeding issues at different stages of an emergency

From: Emergency preparedness for those who care for infants in developed country contexts

Stage of emergency Messages
Prior to the emergency Mothers considering ceasing breastfeeding should consider waiting until after the [bushfire/wildfire/cyclone/hurricane/typhoon/flooding/snowstorm] season.
  Community members should support mothers to exclusively breastfeed their infants in preparation for the emergency season.
  Those caring for infants who are formula fed should store the supplies necessary to formula feed in situations where power and water supplies are disrupted. These supplies include [list as per outlined in this paper].
During the emergency and the emergency recovery period As a result of this emergency, infants are at risk of serious illnesses like diarrhoea and respiratory infections. Mothers who are breastfeeding should continue breastfeeding, because it gives the baby clean water and food and protects them from infection. If your infant is under six months of age, do not give them any other food or liquid because this will make them vulnerable to infection.
  Breastfeeding protects babies during emergencies. Stress does not affect mothers' milk supply. Women who are experiencing difficulties with breastfeeding can find assistance at [insert location or phone number where mothers can access health professional or peer support for breastfeeding].
  Breastfeeding protects infants from infection during this emergency. Mothers can increase their milk supply by breastfeeding more frequently.
  Infants who are formula fed are at serious risk in this emergency. Those who are caring for formula fed infants should take great care to ensure that water used in formula feeding is clean and that all feeding implements are thoroughly cleaned and sterilised before each feed is prepared.
  During this emergency infant feeding bottles may not be able to be properly cleaned because water and power are scarce. Feeding bottles that are not properly cleaned can harbour disease. Those who are caring for formula fed infants are advised to use an easily cleanable cup for feeding.
  Support for those who are caring for formula fed infants can be obtained at [insert location or phone number where care givers can access health professional or peer support for formula feeding].
  People who want to help babies in this emergency can do so by donating money to [insert organisations which are delivering aid to infants]. Please do not donate goods (including infant formula).
  Breastfeeding women who are given donated infant formula should not give it to their babies. Giving an exclusively breastfed baby infant formula can make them vulnerable to infection for weeks. Exclusive breastfeeding protects babies from infection.
  Infants younger than six months of age should not be given water to drink. It can make them extremely ill and may even be fatal.
  Infants and young children are at risk in this emergency. Friends, relatives and neighbours can help babies and young children by assisting their caregivers in practical ways.