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Published on May 29, 2015

Abington Hospital Selected to Join Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative

EMPower Breastfeeding logoABINGTON, PA (May 29, 2015) — Abington Hospital – Jefferson Health has been selected to be among the first hospitals in the nation to join the EMPower Initiative to enhance maternity care practices and work toward achieving the Baby-Friendly USA© designation.

EMPower is a hospital-based quality-improvement initiative focusing on maternity care practices leading to Baby-Friendly designation. Funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, EMPower is aimed at increasing breastfeeding rates throughout the United States and supporting optimal breastfeeding practices toward the ultimate goal of improving the public’s health.

“Our entire organization is committed to promoting proper breastfeeding practices, the benefits of which are undeniable,” said Dr. Steven Shapiro, chair of Abington Hospital’s Pediatrics Department. “Breastfeeding provides a natural source of nutrients babies need, while lowering the risk of numerous health problems for both baby and mother.”

As part of this effort, Abington Hospital will receive ongoing support in breastfeeding practices from experienced coaches, as well as training and resource support in lactation education. The effort supports evidence-based practices for prenatal and maternity settings known as the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding and the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative, an effort to encourage and recognize hospitals and birthing centers that complete the Ten Steps. The Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative, launched in the United States in 1996, designates as “Baby-Friendly” hospitals that meet the criteria for women to initiate and continue with breastfeeding.

About Abington Hospital – Jefferson Health

Abington Hospital is a 665-bed, acute care teaching hospital with a medical staff of more than 1,100 physicians and 6,000 employees. These professionals provide medical care and health services to residents of Bucks, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties.

A regional provider, Abington Hospital has the only Level II accredited trauma center in Montgomery County and offers highly specialized services in cardiac care, cancer care, neurosciences, orthopaedics, home health and maternal/child health.

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