World Breastfeeding Week is around the corner, August 1-7, 2016! If your dream job is working with moms and babies all day long, your ears might e screaming in pain from hearing about the BabyFriendly Hospital Initiative. A little known fact is that in California, BabyFriendly training is also called Birth&Beyond approved. That’s the state program that distributes the funding and training materials across the state. Want to get that Postpartum job? Let’s jump right in!
- What is BabyFriendly(tm)?
- Why is BFHI important for getting a job in postpartum, for New Grads and Transition Nurses?
- How you can become BFHI certified?
The Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative (BFHI) is a global program sponsored by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) to encourage and recognize hospitals and birthing centers that offer an optimal level of care for infant feeding.
The BFHI assists hospitals in giving mothers the information, confidence, and skills needed to successfully initiate and continue breastfeeding their babies, and gives special recognition to hospitals that have done so.
Studies have shown that breastfed babies are less likely to suffer from serious illnesses, including gastroenteritis, asthma, eczema and respiratory and ear infections.
Adults who were breastfed as babies are less likely to develop risk factor for heart disease such as obesity and high blood pressure.
Mothers that breastfeed have a lower risk of developing breast cancer, ovarian cancer and hip fractures in later life.
The BFHI aims to increase the numbers of babies who are exclusively breast fed worldwide, a goal which the WHO estimates could contribute to avoid over a million child deaths each year.
To achieve these goals, all hospitals are required to implement a 2-day Lactation Training Course for all Nurses in the Maternal Child Triad – Labor and Delivery, Postpartum and NICU.
If you’re a Nurse, looking to transfer to Postpartum care, or you’re a New Graduate whose burning desire is “babies, babies and more babies!”, take the 2-Day Lactation Training at NEO! It’s the most tear-inducing, happy treatment you can have in a weekend, and you will learn the latest guidelines on breastfeeding.
The designation of BabyFriendly(tm) is a highly sought after title by every facility, and it is re-evaluated periodically, usually 2 years. The hospital needs to meet ALL criteria, or they get loose the title. Moms are looking for BabyFriendly(tm) hospitals, and that is influencing the census and their decision where to give birth.
You may find yourself taking a course on Lactation, even if that’s not part of your day-to-day job. To find which hospital is considered BabyFriendly(tm), head over to their website BabyFriendly(tm)
The criteria for a hospital’s Baby Friendly accreditation include:
- Have a written breastfeeding policy that is routinely communicated to all health care staff.
- Train all health care staff in skills needed to implement this policy.
- Inform all pregnant women about the benefits and management of breastfeeding.
- Help mothers initiate breastfeeding within one half-hour of birth.
- Show mothers how to breastfeed and maintain lactation, even if they should be separated from their infants.
- Give newborn infants no food or drink other than breast milk, not even sips of water, unless medically indicated.
- Practice room in – that allows mothers and infants to remain together for 24 hours a day.
- Encourage breastfeeding on demand.
- Give no artificial teats or pacifiers to breastfeed infants.
- Foster the establishment of breastfeeding support groups and refer mothers to them on discharge from the hospital.
New Grads seeking a position in the Maternal Child Cluster would enhance their resume by certifying in Lactation. Birth and Beyond is the course most favored by California hospitals. The course meets the criteria of 16 hour classroom instruction for you to assist a postpartum patient with breastfeeding. To add to this certification you must complete the skills within a hospital of a lactation educator. Your instructor can give you more information about acquiring skills in your hospital. The check list is provided and facilitating the skills with a Birth and Beyond educator in a hospital setting will also be provided.
If you’re knee deep into Postpartum job applications, without previous experience, take a look at Foundations of Postpartum. It’s a 5-day training that will lay the foundation of your career in Maternal Child care for years to come! This training is provided quarterly, and the next series in around the corner, scheduled in September 2016.
Foundations of Postpartum will build your resume for Postpartum care, and make the transition period infinitely easier – both for you and your patients.
Foundations of Postpartum is a 47-CEU credit series. You will certify in:
- Fundamentals of Postpartum Care
- AAP NRP Certification
- STABLE Program Certification
- Neonatal Assessment
- Adaptation of the Newborn