The midwife-led maternity centre at the Friarage Hospital in Northallerton has been praised by UNICEF’s UK baby friendly initiative, for the promotion of breastfeeding.
The centre met all of the criteria relating to Stage 3 accreditation and now has the same level of accolade as the maternity unit at The James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough. The staff at both centres were commended for the efforts made in reaching this stage.
Anna Tainsh, from UNICEF’s UK baby friendly initiative said “It was clear to the assessment team that pregnant women and new mothers receive a very high standard of care. Almost all of the mothers interviewed spoke very highly of the care they had received at Friarage maternity centre and this is reflected in the assessment results.
She added: “Excellent progress has been made toward implementing the new maternity standards into care with all of the breastfeeding mothers interviewed understanding how to feed their baby in a responsive way, and many having had a meaningful conversation about relationship building in the antenatal period. We would like to pass on our congratulations to the infant feeding lead and everyone involved.”
Anna’s colleague Jo Orgles commented on the work done by South Tees staff in the community as the trust was successfully reassessed for the same accreditation. Jo said “The staff are commended for their work to maintain the standards established. A special recognition is given to the five days of contact the mothers receive from the community service, many mothers commented on this support and how it had enabled them to continue breastfeeding.”
Paulina Rossi, specialist midwife in infant feeding at the trust added “The James Cook University Hospital has met the criteria for continued baby friendly accreditation for the 14th consecutive year, which is a real achievement. This could not have been attained without the dedication and commitment of the infant feeding key worker team. It is wonderful achievement that Friarage maternity centre now meets the same standard as the James Cook site. The UNICEF UK Baby Friendly initiative will provide a basis to drive forward further improvements in outcomes for women and children in the future.
“The team are instrumental in delivering staff education sessions for staff at both hospital sites. Key workers also support staff within every clinical area and give additional support to ladies with more complex infant feeding needs. ”
Kay Branch, midwife consultant at South Tees said “It is wonderful to receive such high praise and recognition as a lot of work and effort goes into promoting and supporting breast feeding women in our area, which has one of the lowest breast feeding rates in the country.
“It is easy to look at the statistics and make assumptions that we are doing nothing, this accolade demonstrates and recognises the enormous effort that Paulina, the infant feeding team, midwives and neonatal nurses give to maintaining and improving the service we offer.”