North Central Breastfeeding Task Force

We are lactation professionals, breastfeeding advocates, and healthcare providers working to advocate for breastfeeding in our areas of Illinois. Our goal is that all families will live, work, and receive health care in a breastfeeding-friendly culture.

We serve the Collar Counties of Cook, including DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kankakee, Kendall, Lake, McHenry and Will Counties.


New CDC Data on Breastfeeding

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released updated data on breastfeeding rates from the National Immunization Survey. The National Immunization Survey is a random U.S. household survey and has included breastfeeding questions since 2001. Nationally, 83% of babies born in 2019 were ever breastfed and 56% were receiving breastmilk at 6 months. The socio-demographic data indicate that disparities in breastfeeding persist.

 Summary of NIS Breastfeeding Data, 2019 births:

Breastfeeding Rates (National)

  • Among babies born in 2019, breastfeeding rates were as follows:
    • Ever BF: 83.2%
    • BF at 6 months: 55.8%
    • BF at 12 months: 35.9%
    • Exclusive BF at 3 months: 45.3%
    • Exclusive BF at 6 months: 24.9%

 Supplementation Rates (National)

  • Formula supplementation before 2 days was 19.2% among babies born in 2019
  • Formula supplementation before 3 months was 31.2% and before 6 months was 35.3%
  • While formula supplementation appears to be getting worse, this difference is not statistically significant. Do note that 1 in 5 breastfed babies is given formula before 2 days.

 Breastfeeding Rates by State

  • There are 8 states with initiation rates over 90% for babies born in 2019 (Alaska, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Minnesota, Utah, Vermont, Washington, and Wyoming)
  • Alabama (71.1%), Louisiana (71.1%), Florida (71.0%), Mississippi (69.4%), and West Virginia (59.8%) had the lowest initiation rates
  • Exclusive breastfeeding through 3 months ranged from 28% in West Virginia to 62.8% in Colorado
  • HP2030 objective: Exclusive breastfeeding through 6 months ranged from 13.8% in West Virginia to 36.5% in Minnesota (and 36.2% in Vermont)
  • HP2030 objective: Breastfeeding at 12 months ranged from 19.2% in West Virginia to 54.1% in Hawaii (54.0% in Vermont).

NOTE: We don’t recommend states look at individual state changes from year to year given the relatively small sample size and large confidence interval


     Breastfeeding Rates and Sociodemographic Characteristics (National)

    • Breastfeeding disparities continue to exist.
    • Fewer non-Hispanic Black infants (74.1%) are ever breastfed compared with Asian infants (90.8%), non-Hispanic White infants (85.3%) and Hispanic infants (83%).
    • Infants eligible for and receiving the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) are less likely to ever be breastfed (74.7%) than infants eligible, but not receiving WIC (85.6%), and infants ineligible for WIC (91.2%).
    • Younger mothers aged 20 to 29 years are less likely to ever breastfeed (79.9%) than mothers aged 30 years or older (84.9%).
    • Many of these disparities are reflected across the other breastfeeding indicators as well.