The Baby-Friendly re-designation is awarded to hospitals demonstrating a strong commitment to excellence in breastfeeding education and support.
The designation is based on global criteria developed by the World Health Organization and United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative —challenging criteria designed to set the standards for the best possible breastfeeding support for mother and infant in the maternity setting.
“We are so proud of being re-designated a Baby-Friendly Hospital,” said Dominican Hospital President Nanette Mickiewicz, MD. “This recognition demonstrates Dominican’s ongoing commitment to offering breastfeeding mothers the information, confidence, and skills needed to successfully breastfeed their babies.”
Breastfeeding classes for expectant parents as well as breastfeeding support following birth are offered at Dominican Hospital through International Board Certified Lactation Consultants, who are on-site daily to provide teaching and counsel.
As part of the Baby-Friendly initiative, newborns are immediately placed skin-to-skin on their mothers after birth to bond and make their first feeding attempts. They also stay in the same room with their parents throughout their time in the hospital.
Research shows that by offering breastfeeding services in conjunction with Baby Friendly Hospital practices, designated hospitals succeed in promoting, protecting, and supporting breastfeeding. Mothers delivering at a Baby Friendly Hospital tend to breastfeed longer than mothers delivering at other hospitals.
There are more than 20,000 designated Baby-Friendly hospitals and birth centers worldwide, and 551 in the United States. Currently, California leads the nation with 94 hospitals designated as Baby-Friendly.
To learn more about Dominican Hospital’s breastfeeding support services, visit dignityhealth.org/dominicanbirthcenter.