Natural response

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“Only the very poor and the Irish breastfeed” was the reply from the distinguished consultant obstetrician when I dared to seek advice regarding the care of my newborn infant (“Summit aims to convince”, your report, 27 December).

The great man was surrounded by staff in severely starched uniforms while doing his rounds which normally involved little or no contact with patients.

That was in Wales in 1968 and I, like many other first-time young mothers, followed his implied instructions and set off home with my son and a suitcase full of babyfood, manufacturers’ congratulatory cards and generous samples of their goods.

I shall, of course, follow the reports of the summit in the New Year with great interest.

Pearl McCabe

Ravelston Dykes Road

Edinburgh