Cuban Health System protects breastfeeding mothers against COVID-19

María de los Ángeles Gutiérrez is the mother of a six-month-old baby. She goes to her vaccination center to receive the first of the three anti-COVID-19 doses of Abdala, as part of the guarantees of the Cuban Public Health System.

Las Tunas, Cuba.- “It is another way to protect ourselves against COVID-19. But, also, we must comply with all the precautionary measures for ourselves and the babies, because vaccination has not yet been approved for them. As mothers, we must protect them, we cannot trust ourselves, and we have to maintain all the measures that the Ministry of Health insists on: washing our hands, physical distancing, and use of a mask ... and, in our case, staying at home and not allow visits or access of people to our children's rooms. Their health depends on the maturity and responsibility with which we understand the seriousness of the panorama of this disease,” she reflects.

Dianabel Menéndez has been nursing for 10 months. She is also benefited from this health action, in pursuit of the good condition of mothers in the face of the pandemic.

“Every mother has to be willing to give her arm to get vaccinated. It is a way to be more protected against a disease that is affecting us so much,” the 26-year-old girl said, after receiving what she calls “the injection for hope.”

The province of Las Tunas has the entire three-dose scheme to vaccinate 4,440 mothers who breastfeed children less than 1 year of age.

When World Breastfeeding Week is celebrated -from August 1 to 7- this Caribbean country continues to bet on the health of its people.

Protecting motherhood and providing opportunities for healthy breastfeeding is part of international public health programs. Women at this stage of their lives require special protection to prevent harm to their health and that of their babies.