Baby-Friendly USA, recently announced that Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center (PVHMC) has received prestigious international recognition as a Baby-Friendly Designated birth facility. PVHMC becomes the largest hospital in California to receive this recognition.
Based on the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding, this international award identifies birth facilities that offer breastfeeding mothers information, confidence, and skills needed to successfully initiate and continue breastfeeding their babies.
"We're honored to be recognized for providing mothers and babies the best start possible," said Susan Miller, R.N., Women's Center nurse manager and Champion of the hospital's "Baby- Friendly" initiative. "Breastfeeding is one of the most important things a mother can do for her baby and herself. Breast milk provides the baby with nutrients and antibodies."
Breastfeeding benefits for baby include:
‘«ů Reducing "colds" or respiratory infections
‘«ů Protecting against asthma
‘«ů Reducing the chance of diarrhea and bowel infections
‘«ů Decreasing bladder infections
‘«ů Protecting against Diabetes
‘«ů Protecting against "crib death" or Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)
Mothers who breastfeed their babies fit back into their pre-pregnancy clothes sooner; their uterus returns to pre-pregnant state faster; they restore needed minerals that results in stronger bones and protection from osteoporosis; reduces risk of ovarian and/or breast cancer; decreases risk of postpartum depression; and save money not having to buy formula.
"Sometimes a mother cannot immediately begin breastfeeding because her baby is in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), but she can provide breast milk for her baby. We teach her how to pump and safely store her breast milk for later use. To support moms and their babies in this situation we have installed breast milk warmers right beside the NICU beds ‘«Ű we're making every effort to provide all babies born here with breast milk," said Miller.
PVHMC received support from First5LA in the way of a $590,000 grant. The funding paid the salaries of 400 Labor, Delivery and Postpartum Room and NICU nurses to go through a 16-hour class and then another five hours of clinical training on the floor. Thirty nurses also underwent advanced training to become Certified Lactation Educators.
The training enabled our nurses to provide standardize teaching, coaching and support which ultimately leads to a successful breastfeeding experience for mom.
Currently there are 175 active Baby-Friendly hospitals and birth centers in the United States and 6.9% of births occur in Baby-Friendly designated facilities. The "Baby-Friendly" designation is given after a rigorous on-site survey is completed. The award is maintained by continuing to practice the Ten Steps as demonstrated by quality processes.