Resources for Care Providers and Breastfeeding Supporters

The Surgeon General’s Call to Action to Support Breastfeeding

In the United States, most mothers want – and try – to breastfeed. Unfortunately, one mother’s interest alone is not always enough to make breastfeeding possible. Rates of breastfeeding in the United States vary widely because of the multiple and complex barriers mothers face when starting and continuing to breastfeed.

With this Call to Action, the Surgeon General seeks to make it possible for every mother who wishes to breastfeed to be able to do so by shifting how we as a nation think and talk about breastfeeding.

The information below summarizes some of the key findings and action steps from the Surgeon General’s Call to Action to Support Breastfeeding.

Action Guides

Executive Summary

Complete Report

Additional Resources

Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine Clinical Protocols

  • Non-Pharmacologic Management of Procedure-Related Pain in the Breastfeeding Infant – English
  • Peripartum BF Management – English
  • Supplementation – English
  • Going Home/Discharge – English
  • Engorgement  – English
  • Mastitis – English
  • Cosleeping and Breastfeeding – English
  • Human Milk Storage – English
  • Jaundice – English
  • Hypoglycemia – English
  • Breastfeeding the Near-term Infant    (currently under revision) – English
  • Neonatal Ankyloglossia   (currently under revision) – English
  • NICU Graduate Going Home    (currently under revision) – English
  • Breastfeeding the Hypotonic Infant – English
  • Guidelines for Breastfeeding Infants with Cleft Lip, Cleft Palate, or Cleft Lip and Palate – English
  • Galactogogues – English
  • Contraception and Breastfeeding – English
  • Analgesia and Anesthesia for the Breastfeeding Mother – English
  • Use of Antidepressants in Nursing Mothers – English
  • Breastfeeding and the Drug-Dependant Woman – English
  • The Breastfeeding-Friendly Physicians’ Office Part 1: Optimizing Care for Infants and Children – English
  • Model Hospital Policy – English
  • Breastfeeding Promotion in the Prenatal Setting – English


Multiple studies have shown that breastfeeding reduces the risk of breast and ovarian cancers in the mother. Girls that are breastfed as infants go on to have reduced risk for breast cancer later in life.

United States Breastfeeding Committee, Joan Meeks, MD, press release 8-28-08, in honor of breast cancer awareness month.; Enger SM, Ross RK, Paganini-Hill A, Bernstein L. Breastfeeding experience and breast cancer risk among postmenopausal women. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 1998;7:365–369; Rosenblatt KA, Thomas DB. Lactation and the risk of epithelial ovarian cancer. WHO Collaborative Study of Neoplasia and Steroid contraceptives. Int J Epidemiol. 1993;22:192–197; Freudenheim, J. et al. 1994. Exposure to breast milk in infancy and the risk of breast cancer. Epidemiology 5:324-331