Antigua and Barbuda: The Ministry of Health, Wellness and the Environment stated that Antigua and Barbuds are facing a shortage of baby formula, and the deficit will remain to continue in the upcoming days.
The reason behind the shortage is the issue in the supply chain and the recent recall of infant formula by a leading manufacturer. The government has also shown concern over the matters and noted that they are aware of the fact that families have about feeding their babies at this time.
Moreover, the Ministry of Health also shared criteria with the families of the country regarding how they could meet the demand and fulfil their requirement of feeding in this challenging time.
Here are the full criteria about what the families can do:
- If possible, breastfeeding is the first solution to do continually. When the Health Ministry recognized this option is not suitable for everyone that they would encourage those to continue it at least for the first six months of the babies’ life.
- If people are facing problems finding a baby formula, then they could check smaller shops and pharmacies which still consist of stock of the baby formula.
- If people are finding their regular brand and then it is really okay to use another brand available in the market.
- If the stage of the formula currently used is out of stock and then discuss it with the healthcare provider before upgrading or downgrading to another stage.
- Consult a Pediatrician if anyone’s baby requires a specialized formula
- If people are not finding any formula and then they could borrow unopened cans from the other families in anyone’s network.
- Make the formula by yourself or water it down to stretch it out.
- Use of the expired baby formula
- Use of the goat, cow or plant-based milk as a formula substitute for babies under one.
- Give formula to toddlers to babies under one year
- Give cerarl to infants under six months
- Give tea or porridge such as cornmeal and green fig to infants under six months
These options can lead to poor growth and serious health problems. People could continue consult with Pediatrician or District Nurse Midwife at the community clinic
The Ministry of Health, Wellness and the Environment will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates as they become available.