BALTIMORE, Md. - Maryland health officials are encouraging mothers to breast-feed their newborn babies.
The state Department of Health and Mental Hygiene issued recommendations Tuesday intended to get more mothers breast-feeding in the hours after they give birth.
Health officials cite the health benefits associated with breast milk.
The recommendations, which are voluntary, also suggest that hospitals stop giving out free formula from manufacturers, create a written breast-feeding policy, and that breast milk be the only food given to newborns.
This is the first set of recommendations the state has ever issued for breast- feeding.
Health officials say mothers who choose to use formula instead of breast-feed will be supported.
(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
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