Congratulations to CHAMPS hospital, King’s Daughters Medical Center (KDMC) in Brookhaven, Mississippi, for becoming Baby-Friendly designated on February 11, 2019! KDMC has approximately 730 births per year and a level 2B Stabilization Nursery and Neonatal Observation Unit. They have an innovative childbirth education program called “Mommy University,” which features exclusive 1 on 1 education with new moms and their families on equipment, labor experiences, anesthesia, newborn and postpartum care after discharge, and most importantly breastfeeding, immediate skin-to-skin and rooming-in.
“Becoming Baby-Friendly was a complete culture change for our organization,” shares Angie Williamson, RNC, BSN, Maternal-Child Director and CHAMPS Team Lead at KDMC. “Patients really had to be educated on the benefits of breastfeeding and the need for rooming-in. Immediate skin-to-skin following vaginal delivery was the easiest task for us to master. Skin-to-skin following cesarean section was more difficult because pediatricians had to wait to examine the baby, and anesthesia personnel were not thrilled about having their space violated. The nursery staff members also had to learn that there was not going to be a ‘newborn nursery’ any longer and routine procedures were now to be done in the mother’s room. Pediatricians not having all the newborns gathered into the nursery every morning for rounding was also a huge endeavor.”
All these changes were worth it, though, especially now that Angie and her staff are seeing the difference Baby-Friendly is making for maternity services at KDMC. Angie says one of the biggest benefits is staff involvement. With the babies rooming-in with their mothers, the staff now have more time in the rooms for baths, vital signs, routine procedures, and education not only with mothers but entire families. Having more people educated in well-baby care leaves less room for error, Angie says.
Angie would like to thank her entire staff for their hard work throughout the Baby-Friendly journey. She would like to especially recognize Lou Ann Wall, RN, IBCLC, for her tireless efforts in educating and encouraging staff, working endless hours within the hospital and on-call with breastfeeding mothers, starting the first KDMC breastfeeding support group and merging that group into the first Baby Café Cluster in Mississippi, and keeping everyone enthusiastic about breastfeeding and the importance of those first few hours on its success.
“Our focus moving forward since Designation is continuing to improve our breastfeeding rates and keeping all staff and physicians educated and engaged,” says Angie. “We would like to thank the CHAMPS team for all their help along the way. We definitely would not be Baby-Friendly designated without these wonderful ladies’ help and encouragement!”
Well done, KDMC! We are thrilled about your wonderful accomplishment and what it means for mothers and babies in your care!
CHEER Champion of the week
Each Monday (besides public holidays), 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).