The start of 2021 brought much joy as it welcomed hundreds of newborn babies. Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal delivered the most New Year’s babies.
According to a News24 article, Gauteng delivered the most babies this year; welcoming 225 babies. 121 babies being boys and 104 being girls, said officials.
KwaZulu-Natal came in second with 140 New Year babies; 77 boys and 63 girls.
EWN reported that the City of Cape Town welcomed 127 New Year’s babies at public health facilities; 64 are girls and 63 boys. A baby boy was the first to make his 2021 debut at Mowbray Maternity Hospital, 47 minutes after midnight.
69 newborns were welcomed in the Mpumalanga province. This included 37 boys and 32 girls.
According to News24, KZN Health MEC Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu encouraged mothers to breastfeed their new bundles of joy. “The health and wellbeing of the babies is something that we take very seriously at the KZN Department of Health.
“We therefore urge all new mothers across the province to ensure that they give their babies breast milk exclusively, at least for the first six months of their lives.”
Simelane-Zulu explained that although it would not always be possible to breastfeed, mothers should still try to do so, as breast milk has major health benefits, such as “strengthening the baby’s immune system.”
The publication also reports that 30 newborns were delivered in the Free State.
The province’s Health MEC Montseng Tsiu said that due to lockdown Level 3 regulations, the usual celebrations after welcoming the newborns were not possible.
“This year, the department resolved to call off any non-essential visits to health facilities. This has impacted negatively on how we welcomed our new babies, but contributes to life-saving non-pharmaceutical interventions, such as social and physical distancing, to prevent the spread of coronavirus.”
Tsiu continued to say, “It has become essential that we consider every effort to save human lives against this deadly virus, even taking painful decisions that may inconvenience others.”