Memorial Hospital of South Bend has begun the journey to Baby-Friendly!  “What!” you exclaim, “Isn’t a hospital that has been delivering babies for over 100 years already baby friendly?”  I’d like to think we are!  We do love babies and their families.  We help deliver nearly 3000 each year.  However, the more we learn, the more we know WE CAN DO BETTER!  It is our commitment to our community to provide the best evidence based care.  So here we go.  Follow us on the journey to becoming Baby-Friendly.

What is Baby-Friendly?

The Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative is a global effort sponsored by the World Health Organization and UNICEF.  You can check it out at www.babyfriendlyusa.org. With 20 years of research to support it, this initiative has become the gold standard in how to care for babies in the hospital.  It’s as easy as 10 Steps:

1 –

Have a written breastfeeding   policy that is routinely communicated to all health care staff.

2 –

Train all health care staff in   skills necessary to implement this policy.

3 –

Inform all pregnant women about   the benefits and management of breastfeeding.

4 –

Help mothers initiate   breastfeeding within one hour of birth.

5 –

Show mothers how to breastfeed and how to maintain lactation, even if they are separated from their infants.

6 –

Give newborn infants no food or   drink other than breastmilk, unless medically indicated.

7 –

Practice “rooming in”– allow   mothers and infants to remain together 24 hours a day.

8 –

Encourage breastfeeding on   demand.

9 –

Give no pacifiers or artificial   nipples to breastfeeding infants.

10 –

Foster the establishment of breastfeeding   support groups and refer mothers to them on discharge from the hospital or   clinic

Follow the blog.  Follow the journey.
We can’t wait to share with you and hear from you!

Blogtobabyfriendly is written by a collaborative team of experienced nurses, educators, managers, and others who are helping Memorial pursue its Baby-Friendly designation.


9 Responses to About

  1. April Kelly says:

    Amy, this is so exciting! I will share this with everyone I know. I love all the information and links! Can’t wait to hear more.


  2. I was so pleased at today’s task force meeting to say that step #10 is checked off! Thanks April for being part of the Breastfeeding Support Group! You are an awesome part of the community of support we have!

  3. Jen Starks says:

    This is a great initiative! I’m very excited to follow and help support this in any way possible.

  4. Terri Hazen says:

    Are you on Letter of Intent or 4-D?

  5. Amanda S. says:

    I have been following your blog for awhile now and just relaized you were my labor and delivery nurse back in Novemeber. Just wanted to tell you to keep up the great work that you do, you are awesome. Nurses like you make our experiences at the hospital so special and simple and good.. I cant tell you how many times I have thought about my experience and realized how awesome it was to have a great nurse 🙂

    • Amanda! I’m so glad you had a great experience! That’s exactly why I became a labor and delivery nurse, and I am honored to be even a small part of such a sacred event! Thanks for following the blog. Tell you friends to follow too!!!

  6. Megan B. says:

    Best of luck on your journey to become Baby Friendly!! I came across your blog while doing some research on how to acheive this distinction. Any advice on where to start within the hospital (who to talk to)? What was your *first* step?? In a small community where breastfeeding support (and in turn, unfortunately, breastfeeding mothers) is almost non-existent, I have a strong desire to educate and make available the support mothers *deserve* and *need* to be successful!!

    • Thank-you Megan! Are you a nurse at your local hospital? At our hosptial, there have been nurses interested in Baby-Friendly for several years, including me. Last summer one of our unit directors became a champion for Baby-Friendly. Together we started working on bringing key leaders on board while also starting to educate nursing staff so that we would have buy-in from the very beginning. The timing was right for us. I have noticed that many people try to have everything perfectly lined up before even registering with Baby-Friendly. My little piece of advice is to go ahead and register. You get all kinds of helpful information, including a template for your CEO letter of support. Registering also gives the ground level people a boost of excitement! Good luck! You are always welcome to ask any questions here.

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