Cambridge, MA...The Cambridge Birth Center, one of the many women's health services of Cambridge Health Alliance, was recently honored as a Baby-Friendly(™) birth facility by the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative (BFHI). BFHI is an organization created by the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) and the World Health Organization to recognize the important role health care providers and maternity centers play in establishing the best environment for breastfeeding.
BFHI accredits maternity and community facilities that adopt internationally recognized standards of best practice in the care of mothers and babies. While there are almost 19,000 designated Baby-Friendly facilities in the world, only 86 are located in the United States. In order to receive this prestigious honor, the Center completed a rigorous assessment and improvement process designed to promote, protect, and support breastfeeding which included interviews and training with staff as well as meetings with patients.
"This designation is a real achievement and underscores our commitment to nurturing and promoting breastfeeding in the communities we serve," said Kate Reist, IBCLC, Cambridge Health Alliance's lactation consultant. "It will go a long way to encourage breastfeeding, which is seen as a vital aid to increasing the health of mothers and babies alike."
Sarah Coulter Danner, MSN, CNM, acting president of the Board of Directors of Baby-Friendly USA, presented the award at a ceremony at the Cambridge Birth Center on January 19. Baby-Friendly USA is the U.S. authority for the implementation of BFHI. More information is available at www.babyfriendlyusa.org.