The Fisher-Titus Birthing Center has achieved the 3-star Level in the Ohio First Steps for Healthy Babies Program.
Ohio First Steps for Healthy Babies is a voluntary breastfeeding initiative by the Ohio Department of Health and the Ohio Hospital Association.
“We are very pleased to achieve the 3-star designation in the First Steps for Healthy Babies program,” said Alisha Nims, Obstetrics Manager at Fisher-Titus. “The recognition is a testament to the hard work and dedication of our Birthing Center staff. They care deeply for each one of their patients and we are proud to support moms and babies in getting the best possible start.”
There are ten steps in the initiative that follow the World Health Organization and Baby-Friendly USA’s “Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding” guidelines. Hospitals can choose which steps to take and in which order. Hospitals earn one star for every two steps completed with a possible total of five stars.
Fisher-Titus earned its first star in 2019 for completing three steps: having a written breastfeeding policy that is routinely communicated to all health care staff, encouraging breastfeeding on demand, and fostering establishment of breastfeeding support groups and refer mothers to them on discharge from the hospital.
The 3-star designation comes from the renewal of the previous three steps as well as completing three additional steps: giving infants no food or drink other than breast milk, unless medically indicated; practicing rooming-in (allowing mothers and infants to remain together 24 hours a day regardless of feeding method); and giving no pacifiers or artificial nipples to breastfeeding infants.
Before having to be cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Fisher-Titus hosted a breastfeeding support group once a month. The group is open to all breastfeeding mothers and is hosted by a certified lactation consultant. Moms can bring up any concerns or struggles as well as weigh their child before and after feeding. Fisher-Titus also offers breastfeeding education for expecting mothers. Once it is safe to do so, the group will resume meeting and events will be posted on the online calendar at fishertitus.org.
Additionally, Fisher-Titus has five Birthing Center nurses who are Certified Breastfeeding Counselors and three nurses that are also Certified Lactation Counselors, the premier national certification in lactation management. The Birthing Center also has an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC) on staff.
For more information on the Fisher-Titus Birthing Center, visit fishertitus.org/birthing-center.