What makes a Baby-Friendly hospital special?

 

Launched by the World Health Organization, the baby-friendly initiative recognizes hospitals and birthing centers that offer the finest level of care for infant feeding and mother-baby bonding. Sacred Heart Hospital is proud to be certified as the only hospital in the region to complete the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative – offering you the most advanced maternal hospital care in the area from a team of highly skilled baby experts.

To learn more about the baby-friendly hospital initiative, click for a free downloadable booklet.

 

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Breastfeeding Support

 

HSHS values breastfeeding as the best and safest way to feed your baby. To support you and your family, a lactation specialist/consultant will see you in the hospital and they are also available 7 days/week by phone or appointment after you go home. 

As a baby-friendly hospital, we use the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding and the International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes to give mothers the information, confidence, and skills they need to successfully initiate and continue breastfeeding or formula-feed safely.
 
Regardless of the method you choose to feed your baby, you will be allowed time, privacy and support to achieve the goals you set for yourself and your little one.

Mother-baby bonding

 

To help you and your baby to bond, it is encouraged you stay together 24 hours a day. This is called “rooming in” and it has been proven to better prepare you to care for your newborn when you return home.

When baby stays in your room, you will have the opportunity to learn more about him or her and recognize things like feeding cues while hospital staff is around to guide you through those first few nights.    
Studies show that mothers get the same amount and quality of sleep when their babies room in as when they are out of the room.

Skin-to-Skin Contact

 

After baby is born, your care provider will place him or her belly-down directly on your chest. This is called skin-to-skin contact. Your nurse will be there with a warm blanket to cover you and your baby.
 
Quiet time is encouraged during this first hour as this is the time for mom or dad to hold the baby skin-to-skin providing benefits such as:

  • Positive impact on bonding

  • Reduced perception of pain

  • Reduced incidence of postpartum depression

  • Triggers feeding reflexes and increases breastfeeding success

  • Smooth transition for baby to life outside the womb

  • Increased calmness and reduced crying

If you feel nervous about caring for a newborn, you’re not alone.

 

Your nurses have gone through advanced training and experience, and will teach you how to care for baby, as we recognize that is an important part of your hospital stay. Your nurse can help with limiting daytime interruptions and phone calls if you’d like, so that you can rest during the day when your baby sleeps. 

You are also welcome to invite family or a support person to stay with you while you are in the hospital, as you may find them helpful.
 

Watch our Q&A videos to learn about the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative.

 

Baby Friendly, HSHS St. Mary's Hospital Medical Center

What does it mean to be a baby-friendly hospital?

How do you become a baby-friendly hospital?

What is skin-to-skin?

What is cue-based feeding?

What is rooming-in, and what are the benefits?

What are the benefits of breastfeeding, for mom?

What are the benefits of breastfeeding, for baby?

Why do we educate parents about pacifiers?

Why do we educate parents about formula?