NJ Health and Senior Services Commissioner, Capital Health Promote Baby-Friendly® Designation

Host workshop for New Jersey hospital professionals at Capital Health Medical Center - Hopewell

TRENTON, NJ (June 20, 2012) - New Jersey Health and Senior Services Commissioner Mary E. O’Dowd and Capital Health President and CEO Al Maghazehe addressed representatives from hospitals at a statewide workshop presented by Capital Health to assist other hospitals obtain the Baby-Friendly designation. Capital Health was only the second hospital in New Jersey to achieve Baby Friendly status.

"With the dedicated participation of our obstetric and pediatric teams, we have been able to achieve a level of patient-centered care achieved by only a select few hospitals in the United States," said Al Maghazehe, president & CEO, Capital Health.

"Capital Health is proud to have met the high standards for Baby-Friendly designation and honored to host Commissioner O’Dowd and our colleagues from other hospitals throughout the state to share our best practices," he said.

Al Maghazehe State Commissioner Baby Friendly Plaque

New Jersey Health and Senior Services Commissioner Mary E. O'Dowd and Capital Health President & CEO Al Maghazehe address attendees during an event which also celebrated Capital Health becoming only the second hospital in New Jersey to receive Baby-Friendly designation (the official plaque is in the foreground).

Baby-Friendly, USA is a non-profit organization that implements the Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative (BFHI) in the United States. The BFHI, sponsored by the World Health Organization and the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), encourages and recognizes hospitals and birthing centers that offer an optimal level of care for infant feeding.

“Studies have shown that breastfeeding translates to better health for both babies and mothers and that the health benefits persist throughout life. Because of this compelling evidence, our physicians, nurses and staff show an extraordinary commitment to providing excellent support and training to new mothers,” said Eileen Horton, chief nursing officer and vice president for Patient Services.

State Commissioner Audience

At right, New Jersey Health and Senior Services Commissioner Mary E. O'Dowd and Capital Health President and CEO Al Maghazehe address representative from more than 20 hospitals across New Jersey at a workshop presented by Capital Health to assist other hospitals obtain the Baby-Friendly designation.

Being a Baby-Friendly hospital means that Capital Health has demonstrated its commitment to providing comprehensive support and education for breastfeeding mothers and their infants by implementing the 10 Steps to Successful Breastfeeding:

  1. Have a written breastfeeding policy that is routinely communicated to all health care staff. 
  2. Train all health care staff in skills necessary to implement this policy.
  3. Inform all pregnant women about the benefits and management of breastfeeding.
  4. Help mothers initiate breastfeeding within one hour of birth.
  5. Show mothers how to breastfeed and how to maintain lactation, even if they are separated from their infants.
  6. Give newborn infants no food or drink other than breast milk, unless medically indicated.
  7. Practice “rooming in”—allow mothers and infants to remain together 24 hours a day.
  8. Encourage breastfeeding on demand.
  9. Give no pacifiers or artificial nipples to breastfeeding infants.
  10. Foster the establishment of breastfeeding support groups and refer mothers to them on discharge from the hospital or clinic.

In addition to studies that show that breastfed children have reduced risk of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) and less childhood cancer and diabetes, the Surgeon General’s Call to Action to Support Breastfeeding shows that breastfed babies are less likely to become overweight and obese, which is important since the Surgeon General reports that more than 17 percent of children in the United States are overweight.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that less than 3% of hospitals providing birthing services in the United States are Baby-Friendly designated.

Please call 609-303-4140 for more information about Capital Health’s Maternal Child Health Program or if you’re an expectant parent and would like to tour our facilities.

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