What a milestone for HCA. Baby-Friendly USA, the national authority for the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative, has recognized Riverside Community Hospital, part of HCA’s Far West Division, as a baby-friendly birth facility. It’s the first HCA facility to receive the prestigious WHO and UNICEF sponsored recognition.
Hospitals are selected for their high level of care and offering breastfeeding mothers the information, confidence and skills needed to successfully initiate and continue breastfeeding their babies.
Riverside joins the ranks of 20,000 international and 142 U.S. recognized birthing centers and hospitals.
“Our attainment of baby friendly status shows the dedication of our physicians and maternal child staff to provide evidence based, highest quality standard of care for our community. It makes me so proud to be the Director of Women’s and Children’s Services here at RCH and to work with this great team!” said Debra Otwell, Director of Women’s and Children’s Services.
The Baby-Friendly program is an effort to ensure breastfeeding support in a five-year designation maintained through best practices in the “Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding for Hospitals”.
The steps encourage “on-demand” breastfeeding within one hour of birth and teach women how to maintain lactation. Unless medically indicated, breastmilk substitutes are discouraged.
Scientists have discovered that breastfeeding can be beneficial to both babies and their mothers. Studies have shown a reduced risk of acute and chronic disease, for example.
The Mother Baby Unit at Riverside Community has offered the very best maternal-newborn care for over 110 years, offering free comprehensive education to mothers throughout the pregnancy phase, childbirth and post-partum.
The hospital is also a proud partner with First 5 Riverside and March of Dimes, providing mothers with valuable resources for the overall well-being and health of both mother and baby.