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5 Va. hospital systems join breastfeeding effort

Tuesday - 7/24/2012, 7:40am  ET

RICHMOND, Va. - Five Virginia hospital systems have joined a national effort that aims to get mothers of newborns to breastfeed.

The University of Virginia and Virginia Commonwealth University health systems, along with Inova Alexandria Hospital in Alexandria, Inova Loudoun Hospital in Leesburg and Virginia Baptist Hospital in Lynchburg are among 90 hospitals nationwide that are participating in Best Fed Beginnings, a national program that involves hospital health care employees encouraging breastfeeding in new mothers.

The 22-month initiative is receiving funding from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other groups.

Breastfeeding has both short- and long-term health benefits for children, including the reduction of their obesity risk and the decrease of the severity of illnesses.

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