Congratulations to Methodist Olive Branch Hospital in Olive Branch, MS for becoming Baby-Friendly designated on December 12, 2019! Olive Branch has a level II NICU and approximately 650 deliveries per year.
“Becoming a Baby-Friendly Hospital is such a huge accomplishment for our facility! Given the many challenges with our small labor pool and the gravity of this culture change, I am so very proud for our team to have accomplished this goal,” expressed Linda Tuggle, MSN, RNC-OB, and Clinical Director of Maternity Services.
According to Linda, the greatest challenge was the meshing of the prenatal clinics with the hospital’s vision of becoming Baby-Friendly. However, this challenge became their biggest accomplishment, as it facilitated collaboration among all involved entities, towards the goal of becoming designated. In addition, Nicole Jeans, BSN, RN, IBCLC, shared that although they struggled in the beginning with physician and associate buy-in, one of their sweetest successes has been watching those practitioners and associates transform into some of the team’s biggest cheerleaders.
At Methodist Olive Branch, delivering high quality, evidence-based care has always been a priority; this priority is right in line with the Baby-Friendly hospital initiative. Linda shared that the team is very proud to ensure that mothers and babies in their community receive the highest level of care. Nicole reported that it has been very empowering to see the hospital’s breastfeeding exclusivity and initiation rates rise significantly, and to witness the associates advocating for mothers and their breastfeeding goals. “Breastfeeding has become a new norm on the unit, and that is truly a culture change. It is wonderful,” she stated.
Linda and Nicole would like to recognize the entire team for staying the course and doing all the hard work it took to get designated. “It was truly a labor of love for the entire team,” Linda shared. She further expressed an appreciation for Nicole’s investment, time, and efforts, as well as the Baby-Friendly task force members: Pam Young, Tiffany Everett, Brittany Smith, Mari Canizaro, and Catherine Claire Hill.
Now that they are designated, the team looks forward to sustaining their efforts, closely monitoring their data, and growing with Baby-Friendly. “This designation serves as a reminder of the investment we have, not only in our community, but also in the improvement of healthcare for every life we touch,” says Linda. The team hopes to maintain the positive culture change created at Methodist Olive Branch Hospital.
Congratulations Olive Branch! Thank you for your commitment to delivering quality, evidence-based care to mothers and babies in your community.
This Week’s Champion is Dorie Walsh, BSN, RN-MNN. In her role as Transition Nurse for University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC), Dorie assumes the care of infants at mother’s bedside within the first 30 minutes of life. She was nominated because of her incredible passion for teaching mothers and helping them to facilitate successful skin to skin and breastfeeding while under her care.
“I have the desire to help each mother and child experience the joy and happiness that breastfeeding offers”, says Dorie. “I really feel that each mother we touch can change a baby’s life.”
Dorie started out her career at Ochsner Foundation Hospital New Orleans, where she worked as an RN from 1988 -1995. After this, she took a break for a few years and returned to work as a full time lactation consultant in 2002. For the next 14.5 years, she worked with the Merit Health System until she joined UMMC as Transition Nurse in 2017.
When asked about her motivation, Dorie replied that her work is motivated by motherhood. Upon the birth of her first daughter in 1990, she knew she would breastfeed because it was free, God given, and the best option for her baby. Over the years, she has learned a lot more about breastfeeding and become even more determined to help facilitate the process for other moms.
As a former IBCLC and an educator at heart, Dorie derives personal and professional fulfillment from helping her patients to breastfeed. “I have a love for teaching!” she shares excitedly. “I’ve been able to teach breastfeeding class, sibling’s class, and help countless moms over my 30 year career with breastfeeding. It has been my true life’s mission and calling.” She described how mothers are usually concerned and discouraged by the idea that they are not producing adequate milk for their babies, and expressed a conviction that these feelings can often be remedied through education and bedside assistance.
Although her career has always centered on newborn care, Dorie believes that it has evolved into something greater. In her current role, she has more opportunity to talk to her patients about why breast is best and how breastmilk is made. She seeks to impart an understanding of the wonder and uniqueness of the process, to empower moms and enable them to appreciate themselves and their bodies.
In addition to all her other accomplishments, Dorie is certified in Maternal Newborn Nursing, an AWHONN member, and a mother to two beautiful daughters.
Congratulations Dorie! Thanks for all your efforts to help mothers navigate challenges associated with breastfeeding.
Congratulations to Mississippi Baptist Medical Center (MBMC) on becoming officially Baby-Friendly designated on December 6, 2019. MBMC accounts for about 1774 births annually and operates a level III NICU.
“We are so excited to be the recipient of such a prestigious award. Our staff are quality driven and this is a true testament to their commitment to providing the best possible care for our mothers and babies,” expressed Roselynn Middleton, MSN, BSN, RN NE-BC Director of Women’s Operations at MBMC.
As expected with such a big change, the team initially struggled with implementing changes to their established practices and work flow when they began their Baby-Friendly journey three years ago. However, things changed for the better on August 13, 2018, when the Baby-Friendly Task force, a select group of highly engaged and motivated nurses from each area (Mother/baby, NICU, and L&D), took ownership of the initiative. They developed a system of mutual accountability and empowered the staff to drive the process using their Shared Governance model. “These nurses set the bar high and never wavered. It is through their hard work and commitment to excellence that we are able to say that we are now a Baby-Friendly facility,” Roselynn stated.
Through the Baby-Friendly process, the hospital has gotten to a place where mothers and babies are no longer separated, barring any complications. Breastfeeding has become a top-priority and the staff are now more dedicated to providing evidence-based Baby-Friendly care during those first crucial days of life. “We have seen so many positive strides and changes in our culture while on this journey,” Roselynn shares.
Roselynn would like to recognize the unit Nurse Managers, Amy Cross, Julie Prisock, Erica Shepard, the Baby Friendly Task Force, and every member of staff for their dedication and commitment to this venture. She offers special thanks to Becky Knapp, the CHAMPS advisor, Diana Johnston, MSN, RN for her endless trail of audits, Amy Swales for all of her assistance and guidance during the final days, the physician team who helped educate our patients prior to delivery, and the MBMC senior leadership team for all of their support.
The hospital is excited about what the future holds now that they are designated! Roselynn shared that they had a well-deserved staff celebration on December 19th, and the team will continue to maintain and support the Baby-Friendly practices knowing that they are providing moms and babies with the best possible start.
Congratulations, MBMC, on your Baby-Friendly designation!
Congratulations to our Hospital of the Week, Merit Health Biloxi, on becoming Baby-Friendly designated as of November 27th, 2019. Merit Biloxi is a 153 bed, acute care hospital, which conducts approximately 888 births per year and operates a level 2 NICU. They began their Baby-Friendly journey in 2016 and are delighted to be the first Baby-Friendly hospital on the MS gulf coast!
“I feel very proud because we’ve worked really hard to get here! We’re happy about this development as it is good for the hospital’s growth and competitiveness relative to other hospitals in the state,” shared Rebecca Yates, RN, CLC, Lactation Consultant and BFHI Team Lead at Biloxi.
Biloxi’s designation is a testament to the team’s resilience. Rebecca shared that early on in their journey, some staff were hesitant to implement aspects of Baby-Friendly. However with open communication and opportunities to address concerns one-on-one, staff started to fully embrace the process. “Once their individual concerns were resolved, the staff felt more positive about adopting BFHI practices,” Rebecca stated. “Achieving this change in perspective, in such a short time, has been a tremendous success for the team.”
Since they started on the Baby-Friendly pathway, Biloxi has recorded fewer cold and hypoglycemic babies. Rebecca described how the recommended practices have enriched mothers’ delivery experiences at the facility. She narrated that moms often express feeling more involved in the care of their babies than before. “Moms are much happier with the changes, they feel like active participants in the process and they like that everything is done right in front of them.”
When asked about the team’s future plans, Rebecca shared that they are currently planning a party to celebrate! Going forward, they intend to work on improving their exclusivity rates by providing better education to moms about the amount of breastmilk needed to nourish babies and the risk of formula, so moms feel more empowered to breastfeed exclusively.
Rebecca would like to recognize the entire unit staff at Biloxi for being instrumental in the process. Specifically, she wants to extend her appreciation to Jeff Thompson, who made a huge turnaround and was very supportive of the changes, and Cadie Griffing, for being her right hand person, helping to coordinate audits, and assisting with assessments.
Congratulations on your designation, Biloxi, we are very excited for you!
CHEER Champion of the week
Each week, we will recognize a CHEER Champion for all the work they have done for CHEER (Center for Health Equity, Education, and Research)/CHAMPS (Communities and Hospitals Advancing Maternity Practices).