UMC’s commitment to healthy mothers and babies was rewarded recently by Baby-Friendly USA. UMC is now a Baby-Friendly Designated birth facility.
Baby-Friendly Designation reflects an organization’s commitment to train staff on the importance of breastfeeding, skin-to-skin contact and rooming-in – keeping mothers and babies together 24-hours a day throughout the hospital stay. The Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding are utilized to educate and support breastfeeding women. Baby-Friendly hospitals encourage breastfeeding for all babies unless medically indicated. Baby-Friendly practices also support mothers who are unable or choose not to breastfeed by educating them to safely prepare and feed formula to their babies.
“Baby-Friendly hospitals are proven to help mothers attain the knowledge, skills and confidence to achieve successful breastfeeding,” said Tammy Williams, UMC senior vice president for patient care services. “As a Baby-Friendly facility there are policies in place that support optimal infant nutrition and mother-baby bonding. Every mother and baby is special, and they deserve to be offered the best evidence-based information and care.”
There are 338 active Baby-Friendly hospitals and birth centers in the United States and 16 in Texas. UMC and University Medical Center – El Paso are the only two Texas facilities west of the I-35 corridor to sport this designation.
The Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative is a worldwide program sponsored by the World Health Organization and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF). The initiative encourages and recognizes hospitals that offer an optimal level of care for breastfeeding mothers and their babies. To learn more about Baby-Friendly USA and the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding, visit babyfriendlyusa.org.
UMC Health System is ranked among the top 10 percent of hospitals in the nation for patient experience by HealthGrades, and has consistently ranked among the best places to work in Texas by the Best Companies Group. More than 500,000 patients a year choose UMC.