Having a baby is a life-changing event that brings joy, but for many women also comes with stress and anxiety. The restrictions and uncertainties associated with the current COVID‑19 pandemic are undoubtedly adding to those fears and worries, so more than a dozen WSU researchers recently joined forces to form the WSU COVID‑19 Infant, Maternal, and Family Health Research Collaborative.

Courtney Meehan.

“We are exploring how maternal COVID‑19 infection is related to overall breastmilk composition and infant health and wellbeing. Specifically, we are interested in potential protective effects of breastfeeding during this time,” said WSU lead investigator Courtney Meehan, an associate professor of anthropology and associate dean of research and graduate studies in the WSU College of Arts and Sciences. “It is essential that we get this information quickly and accurately so we can better inform the public, as well as those who create policy,” she said, pointing to the varying recommendations that are currently being put forward by agencies such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, World Health Organization, and UNICEF.

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