The Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative (BFHI) is a global program established to help health care facilities equip new mothers "to successfully initiate and continue breastfeeding their babies" after birth. The BFHI does this by helping facilities change routine care practices that undermine breastfeeding success. Facilities that go through the accreditation process and successfully change their practices to align with the initiative earn the Baby-Friendly® designation.
Introducing our Baby-Friendly Resources
The Baby-Friendly versions of Newborn Care and Settling In with Baby, available exclusively by custom order, have been edited based on The Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding, evidence-based practices established by the BFHI. These are several key differences in the content presented in the Baby-Friendly versions compared with the standard books:
- Breastfeeding is the exclusive means presented for feeding babies. (The standard books include detailed information regarding bottle feeding and formula. This is excluded from the Baby-Friendly versions, but can be purchased separately, if desired, using this handout.)
- Regarding supplementation (to be used only when medically indicated and supplements should be breast milk), information is provided about using a syringe, cup, or spoon as alternatives to artificial nipples.
- Early pacifier use is to be reserved only for comfort during painful procedures and only if breastfeeding is not possible.
- The rooming-in model is promoted.
- All references to infant formula and infant feeding bottles clearly indicate that breastfeeding and breast milk are optimal forms of infant nutrition in accordance with the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes.
The BFHI aims to empower healthcare providers with the education to motivate change in practice. In turn, families are empowered to make informed decisions regarding infant feeding. If your facility has accomplished the honor of earning Baby-Friendly accreditation, is in the process, or plans to begin the process, the Baby-Friendly version of Newborn Care or Settling In with Baby are ideal additions to your parent education materials.
- Baby-Friendly USA. “The Guidelines and Evaluation Criteria" babyfriendlyusa.org. Baby-Friendly USA, Inc., 2021.
- Newborn Care, Baby-Friendly Edition by Plumtree Baby © 2021
- Settling In with Baby, Baby-Friendly Edition by Plumtree Baby © 2021
Summer Baker RNC, BSN, Breastfeeding Educator & Lactation Coach
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