Exploring the impact of the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative on mothers, infants, and hospitals

Thumbnail Image
Menkedick, Faith
Van Hove, Sharon
Issue Date
Thesis (B.?)
Honors College
Other Identifiers

The Baby-Friendly Hospital lnitiative (BFHI), developed in 1991 by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), is an international program that recognizes certain hospitals and birthing centers that provide the best care for infant feeding and bonding of the mother and baby. In order to be designated Baby-Friendly, a hospital or birthing facility must practice The Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding, which include training staff members on the set breastfeeding policy, offering mothers the information and skills needed to begin and continue breastfeeding their babies, as well as allowing the mothers and infants to be together 24 hours a day and giving no pacifiers or artificial nipples. The hospital must also implement the International Code of Marketing of Breast-Milk Substitutes, which includes no advertisement of breast milk substitutes, no free samples or supplies, no pictures that promote artificial feeding, and the information on artificial feeding must explain the benefits of breastfeeding versus the costs and risks of artificial feeding. Using evidence-based practice, we created a research paper that looked into the creation of the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative, how a facility can reach this accreditation, and the effects on mothers, infants, and the hospital as a whole.