University Hospitals Elyria Medical Center has earned the prestigious Baby-Friendly designation by Baby-Friendly USA, Inc. (BFUSA). This distinction recognizes excellence in evidence-based maternity care, with the goal of optimal infant feeding outcomes and mother/baby bonding.
BFUSA is the national authority for the implementation of the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative (BFHI), a global program sponsored by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).
BFUSA believes: (1) human milk fed through direct breastfeeding is the optimal way for human infants to be nurtured and nourished; (2) the precious first days should be protected as a time of bonding and support not influenced by commercial interests; and (3) every mother should be informed about the benefits of breastfeeding and respected to make her own choice.
“I am extremely proud of the physicians, nurses, technicians and staff of UH Elyria Medical Center and our Family Birth Center in particular for their efforts to earn the Baby-Friendly designation,” said Kristi Sink, President of UH Elyria Medical Center. “At the heart of their quest to attain this honor was our staff members’ deeply rooted desire to provide the very best care for mothers and infants, and to educate them on how to live their healthiest lives.”
There are only eight Baby-Friendly designated hospitals in the state of Ohio, including UH Elyria Medical Center and UH MacDonald Women’s Hospital in Cleveland. The journey to Baby-Friendly designation began two years ago at UH Elyria Medical Center, and was a collaborative effort among several departments of the hospital which each played a significant role. A rigorous, on-site, two-day survey by BFUSA representatives took place earlier this year, and was the final step in UH Elyria Medical Center receiving Baby-Friendly designation.
For additional information on the benefits to babies born in Baby-Friendly hospitals, visit BabyFriendlyUSA.org.