Huntington Hospital has been awarded the Baby-Friendly designation from
Baby-Friendly USA (BFUSA), a credentialing program for hospitals that
is part of an international initiative led by the World Health Organization
(WHO) and the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF). The award recognizes
the implementation of Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding and International
Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes which are evidence-based
practices that have been shown to increase breastfeeding initiation and
duration. This accreditation highlights Huntington Hospital’s commitment
to ensuring that all mothers and their newborns receive the support needed
to achieve breastfeeding success.
“The goal of our program has always been to support new mothers with
the techniques they need to accomplish their own breastfeeding goals,”
said Margaret Legault, MD. “Our physicians and nurses work diligently
to provide education, support and care to mothers and their babies, to
begin life on a healthy path. This designation highlights our commitment
to excellence in maternity care."
The work of BFUSA and its implementation of the Baby-Friendly Hospital
Initiative (BFHI) in the United States is predicated on the fact that
human milk fed through the mother’s own breast is the normal way
for human infants to be nourished. There is an abundance of scientific
evidence that points to lower risks for certain diseases and improved
health outcomes for both mothers and babies who breastfeed. Breastfeeding
is the natural biological conclusion to pregnancy and an important mechanism
for the continued normal development of the infant. With the correct information
and the right supports in place, under normal circumstances, most women
who choose to breastfeed are able to successfully achieve their goal.
The BFHI is a global initiative of WHO and UNICEF. It is implemented in
the United States by BFUSA.