Health Secretary: NHS Trust’s male-milk scheme ‘inappropriate’

Health Secretary Victoria Atkins has criticised the NHS trust which claimed gender-confused men can breastfeed their children as well as women.

It was revealed earlier this month that the University Hospitals Sussex NHS Foundation Trust has gender policies which states that men who identify as women can provide milk for babies by hormone-induced lactation.

The Trust claimed “human milk”, including ‘male secretions’, is the “ideal food for infants”, but Mrs Atkins said she found it “extraordinary that a trust thought this was an appropriate use of their time”.

‘Deeply concerning’

The Health Secretary said: “I would like my rights as a woman to be protected”.

She added that society must make a “robust case to refuse to wipe women out of the conversation”, saying: “When I see reports of mothers as ‘people who give birth’! No – they are mums.”

She said she found it “deeply concerning” that some activists “seem to think that women can just be written out of our vocabulary”.

“Half the population are women. Of course the NHS should use the word ‘woman’”, she added.

‘Chestfeeding’ risks

So-called chestfeeding by men is made possible by taking drugs such as domperidone, which induces lactation, but has been linked to heart problems, including for the babies receiving the milk.

The UK Government website states that domperidone use should be restricted to the relief of nausea and vomiting and should be used at the lowest effective dose for the shortest possible time.

Last week, Labour MP Rosie Duffield accused the Trust of using babies as “guinea pigs for someone else’s lifestyle choice”.

“When a man has not and cannot grow a baby, why on earth are we pandering to this? Who does it benefit? Not the children. We wouldn’t do any other medical experiments on babies. Breast milk made by a baby’s biological mother is tailor-made for that baby.”

Also see:

‘Men’s milk just as good for babies as the mum’s’ says NHS trust

Columnist: ‘US male breastfeeding advice has reduced babies to guinea pigs’

Brighton hospitals rebrand breastfeeding as ‘chestfeeding’

Stonewall Chairman: ‘Male breastfeeding will become commonplace’

RCOG issues draft guidance on ‘pregnant men’ and ‘chestfeeding’

Related Resources