Minister of Health Dr Joe Phaahla welcomes 1764 babies born at various public health care facilities across the country on New Year’s day, and congratulates all parents on the safe arrival of their little bundles of joy and wishes them a good health.
The first baby was a girl who was delivered at 00h00 at Shongwe Hospital, Mpumalanga by a 25-year-old mother. The country has recorded more baby girls at 894 as compared to a total number of 870 baby boys, with more than 65 teenage mothers between the age of 13 and 19 years old.
Minister Phaahla encourages all mothers to consider exclusive breastfeed for their babies for the first 6 months of life and ensure they get necessary immunisations from birth, and always remember to take their Road-To-Health-Booklet, previously known as Clinic Card to hospital or clinic as it keeps track of your child’s immunisation which shows doctors and nurses your child growth.
“Babies need only milk feeds for the first 6 months of life, but milk continues to be an important source of nutrients to children after 6 months, therefore there is no need to put a time limit on feeds’, said Minister Phaahla.
A child’s health is most vulnerable during the first 1000 days of their lives, and the right nutrition during this period can have a profound impact on a child’s ability to develop and learn.
Together, we can ensure that South Africa’s infants receive the care they need to survive and thrive. All unvaccinated and partly vaccinated mothers are urged to vaccinate against COVID-19 as it is safe to vaccinate and breastfeed.
For more information on how to raise a healthy child, access Side-by-Side – a campaign for pregnant women and caregivers of children younger than 5 years, which uses multiple communication channels on https://sidebyside.co.za/
A BREAKDOWN OF BABIES BORN ON THE FIRST DAY OF THE YEAR 2022
PROVINCE MALES FEMALES TOTAL
Province: North West
Province: Free State
Province: Northern Cape
Province: Eastern Cape
Province: Western Cape