4/27/18

Baby-Friendly status spotlights breastfeeding for better health

Carle’s gold standard of care for mothers and babies reaches new heights with Baby-Friendly accreditation.

Lisa Siegwald, RNC, manager of mother/baby, believes being Baby-Friendly fits Carle’s commitment to healthier outcomes for moms and babies.

“This is one more way to serve moms and babies with evidence-based, top-notch care,” Siegwald said.

She co-led the five-year hospital-wide efforts to train staff on Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding. This week Carle joined just 512 facilities nationwide accredited by Baby Friendly USA with five hospitals earning this distinction in Central Illinois.

“Everything we do is tied to giving breastfeeding mothers the information, confidence and skills needed to successfully initiate and continue breastfeeding their babies,” Siegwald said.

The World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) created the Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative to encourage hospitals to create and maintain more programs to support breastfeeding mothers.

Pam Unger, director of Women and Children’s Services, said breastfeeding provides numerous benefits for both mom and babies.

“For baby, it reduces risk of SIDS, childhood cancer and diabetes. And for Mom, her body recovers more quickly from pregnancy, and breastfeeding reduces risk of cancers,” Unger said.

One way to encourage breastfeeding is keeping mothers and babies together as much as possible. Doing so increases how well the baby eats, decreases postpartum depression, and helps the mom sleep better and the baby cry less.

Baby-Friendly also encourages “skin-to-skin” contact, allowing the baby to eat better, regulates the baby’s temperature and heart rate, and helps the mom establish a better breast milk supply.

Carle lactation consultants are available by appointment at Urbana on Windsor, Monday and Friday 9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., and Champaign on Curtis, Tuesday and Thursday, 9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. Appointments are open to the community regardless of where they receive care.

These programs help mothers have a more positive breastfeeding and postnatal experience.

“Baby Friendly designation is one more differentiator that proves Carle is the right place for the region’s best care for moms and babies. From OB to NICU to Child Life to pediatrics, we have a robust approach to comprehensive care,” said Kayla Banks, vice president, Women’s Health Services and Medical Education.