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.