Mother breastfeeding

Salem Hospital receives international baby-friendly designation

Dec 28, 2017

Salem Hospital has received international recognition as a Baby-Friendly designated birth facility.

Baby-Friendly USA, Inc is the U.S. authority for the implementation of the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative, a global program sponsored by the World Health Organization and the United Nations Children’s Fund. The initiative encourages and recognizes hospitals and birthing centers that offer an optimal level of care for breastfeeding mothers and their babies.

“It is our goal that all pregnant women receive evidence-based information on breastfeeding throughout pregnancy and the postpartum period,” says Lisa Ketchum, RN, Salem Health women’s and children’s services director. “Each of the clinical nurses in Women’s and Children’s Services has received specialized training to meet each mother and baby’s needs, and our international, board-certified lactation consultants are available for both inpatient and outpatient support.”

The “Baby-Friendly” designation is given after a rigorous on-site survey is completed. Based on the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding, this international accolade honors birth facilities that offer breastfeeding mothers the information, confidence and skills needed to successfully begin and continue breastfeeding their babies. There are more than 20,000 designated Baby-Friendly hospitals and birth centers worldwide. The award is maintained by continuing to practice the Ten Steps as demonstrated by quality processes.

“Our philosophy is that we are here to support moms and babies be successful with feedings,” says Heidi FitzGerald, RN, Salem Health lactation consultant. “That support comes in many forms, from helping with a feeding to education regarding the benefits of breastfeeding and how to arrive at the best possible outcome for mom and baby. We also provide an abundance of emotional support during an exciting but challenging transition into parenthood.”

About Salem Health: Salem Health offers exceptional care to people in and around Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley. It comprises hospitals in Salem and Dallas, a medical group of primary and specialty care providers, plus other affiliated services. Visit us at; “Like” us on; follow us on Twitter: @salemhealth; and view us at

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