HOUSTON (June 27, 2018)

Memorial Hermann Southeast Hospital has received prestigious international recognition as a Baby-Friendly® Designated birth facility by Baby-Friendly USA, Inc.

“This recognition is an honor and great achievement by our team and it confirms our staff and affiliated physicians’ dedication to providing mothers and infants with high quality expert care,” said Kyle Price, CEO of Memorial Hermann Southeast Hospital.

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

Based on the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding, this prestigious international award recognizes birth facilities that offer breastfeeding mothers the information, confidence, and skills needed to successfully initiate and continue breastfeeding their babies.

“Baby-Friendly recognition is only given to facilities who earn it by meeting challenging criteria that ultimately benefits mothers, their newborns and our community,” said Nikole Keenan, BSN, RNC-MNN, NE-BC, Director of Women's & Children's Services at Memorial Hermann Southeast. “Our team has worked hard to meet the criteria in order to be champions for breastfeeding and support our mothers and infants.”

There are more than 20,000 designated Baby-Friendly hospitals and birth centers worldwide. Currently there are 326 active Baby-Friendly hospitals and birth centers in the United States. The “Baby-Friendly” designation is given after a rigorous on-site survey is completed. The award is maintained by continuing to practice the Ten Steps as demonstrated by quality processes.

Last year, Memorial Hermann Southeast received the 2017 International Board Certified Lactation Consultant® (IBCLC®) Care Award from the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners® (IBLCE) and the International Lactation Consultant Association® (ILCA). The global award recognizes facilities that hire certified lactation consultants, promote and support breastfeeding, and have a lactation program available to patients five days a week.