At UMC Health System, we use care practices that improve the health
of both mothers and babies. One of these care practices is ensuring
mothers leave UMC Family Birth Center confident in their breastfeeding
abilities. These are the steps we use to do so:
- Maintain a written breastfeeding policy that is routinely communicated to all health care staff.
- Train all health care staff in skills necessary to implement this policy.
- Inform all pregnant women about the benefits and management of breastfeeding.
- Help mothers initiate breastfeeding within one hour of birth.
- Show mothers how to breastfeed and how to maintain lactation, even if they’re separated from their infants.
- Give infants no food or drink other than breastmilk, unless medically indicated.
- Practice "rooming in" - allow mothers and infants to remain together 24 hours a day.
- Encourage unrestricted breastfeeding.
- Give no pacifiers or artificial nipples to breastfeeding infants.
- Foster the establishment of breastfeeding support groups and refer mothers to them upon discharge from the hospital or clinic.
Materials distributed to pregnant and breastfeeding women and/or
displayed in the facility are free of messages which promote infant food
or drink other than breast milk. These materials will not refer to
proprietary (or commercial) product(s) and will not bear the product
The Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative (BFHI) is a global program
sponsored by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations
Children's Fund (UNICEF). Baby Friendly USA is the national authority
in the United States.