Baby Friendly Status
In 2015 Edith Cavell Hospital was awarded ‘Baby Friendly’ status after an extensive evaluation by independant experts. This certificate has continued to be valid at Delta hospital and standards are reviewed at regular intervals.
The World Health Organisation and Unicef is to ensure that both mother and her newborn baby have acces to the best medical care as possible. They encourage health services to provide parents support and information, to encourage early bonding between mother and child and to protect, promote and support breastfeeding.
In order to encourage hospitals to participate in this objective, hospitals can be granted ‘Baby Friendly’ status if ten criteria are met.
Ten Criteria for successful breastfeeding
All maternity and newborn care services should :
- Adopt written breastfeeding guidelines to be used by all healthcare workers (nurses, midwives and doctors).
- Give all staff the training and skills necessary to implement this policy.
- Inform all pregnant women of the advantages of breastfeeding.
- Put newborns in contact skin-to-skin with their mother (or with the father if the mother is unable), immediately at birth and for at least an hour, and to encourage mothers to recognize when their baby is ready to suck.
- Show mothers how to breastfeed by direct teaching ‘at the breast’ and how to maintain this even if they are separated from their baby (for example if the baby requires special care).
- Give newborn infants no food or any drink other than breast milk, unless medically required.
- Ensure that mother and baby are not separated (for example after a caesarean section).
- Encourage breastfeeding on demand.
- Not give the baby an artificial teat or pacifier / dummy.
- Provide information to mothers regarding support after discharge from hospital.
Other required criteria :
- The percentage of mothers breastfeeding on leaving the hospital should be at least 75%.
- Support and respect the needs and wishes of the couple during labour and birth.
- Publicity and other promotional devices such as free samples of artificial milk are not allowed.
- Help and support mothers who decide not to breastfeed their baby.