Ohio Hospital Newswire


Hospitals Can Apply Today to Earn Healthy Babies Program Recognition




The Ohio Hospital Association’s Ohio First Steps for Healthy Babies program, in partnership with the Ohio Breastfeeding Alliance and Ohio Lactation Consultants Association, invites member hospitals to apply by Feb. 16 for 2018 Bag Free recognition. This designation recognizes facilities that do not provide any formula company-sponsored gift/diaper bags, which often include formula and/or formula company-sponsored materials. Research shows that distribution of formula marketing materials leads to a decrease breastfeeding initiation and duration rates.
These practices align with the goals of the Ohio First Steps for Healthy Babies program, an OHA and Ohio Department of Health initiative to reduce infant mortality in Ohio. Research has shown breast milk is associated with a reduction in Sudden Infant Death Syndrome and an increase in several health outcomes for both mother and baby.
Through the First Steps for Healthy Babies program, hospitals earn one star for every two steps achieved in the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding as defined by the World Health Organization and Baby-Friendly USA. Hospitals can earn a total of five stars as a part of this effort. The initiative encourages maternity centers across the state to promote and support breastfeeding one step at a time along with the option to select which steps — some or all — to adopt.
If your hospital did not give out formula-sponsored materials in 2017 and would like to be recognized, please take a moment to apply. Awards will be announced in March.
For questions, please contact Ryan Everett at or visit the Ohio First Steps for Healthy Babies webpage.
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