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Sunday, 19 November 2017
Our hospital bags ‘Baby Friendly’ award
14 December 2016

Our hospital has been awarded the prized ‘Baby Friendly’ award in recognition of the high standards of care which mothers receive.

The hospital has been given the accreditation by UNICEF (United Nation’s Children’s Fund) after demonstrating policies are in place to support breastfeeding and help mothers build a strong relationship with their babies.

UNICEF representatives visited the hospital twice to carry out assessments, and looked in detail at the training given to staff to give them the necessary practical skills and knowledge to help mothers and their families receiving care in hospital, at home or on the neonatal unit.

Parents using the hospital’s maternity and neonatal services were also asked about the care they received.

Linda Page, breastfeeding coordinator at Ipswich Hospital, said: “We are absolutely delighted that we have achieved full Baby Friendly status. It shows that parents who have their babies at Ipswich Hospital are receiving the right help to make sure their children get the best possible start in life.

"Breastfeeding protects babies against a wide range of serious illnesses, including gastroenteritis and respiratory infections in infancy as well as allergies and diabetes in childhood. It can also help protect mum too, by reducing the risk of some cancers.

“Breastfeeding isn’t always easy and lots of new mothers need support. We’re committed to making sure they get the help they need and are pleased that has been recognised by UNICEF.

“But however a mother chooses to feed her baby, she can be sure that she will be supported to form a strong loving relationship with her newborn – through having maximum skin-to-skin contact and understanding how her baby communicates with her and needs her to respond.”

The Baby Friendly Initiative is a global programme which provides a practical and effective way for health services to improve the care provided for all mothers and babies. In the UK, the initiative works with health professionals to ensure that mothers and babies receive high-quality support to enable successful breastfeeding and strong mother and baby relationships

“We are delighted that Ipswich Hospital has achieved full Baby Friendly status,” said Sue Ashmore, programme director for the Baby Friendly Initiative. “Surveys show us that most mothers want to breastfeed but don’t always get the support they need. Mothers in the Ipswich area can be confident that their midwives will provide high standards of care.”

For further information on the Baby Friendly Initiative, visit www.unicef.org.uk/babyfriendly