Baby-Friendly Facility

Adventist Health White Memorial is baby-friendly

While we have always been “baby friendly,” Adventist Health White Memorial has also received the prestigious Baby-Friendly designation by Baby-Friendly USA. husband and wife with newborn

Through the collaboration of our physicians, nurses and our entire healthcare team, we are now recognized as a facility that offers mothers the information, confidence and skills needed to successfully initiate and continue breastfeeding their babies. We have also answered the Surgeon General’s call to action by bringing ourselves into alignment with the work of the White House Task Force on Childhood Obesity, Healthy People 2020 goals.

The Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative (BFHI) was developed by the World Health Organization (WHO) and United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in the early 1990s in an effort to increase breastfeeding rates and, in turn, reduce childhood illness and death. BFHI includes practices proven to promote, protect and support breastfeeding.

The decision to pursue the Baby-Friendly designation was made possible thanks to First 5 LA, which awarded our charitable foundation a grant of $696,219. The medical center staff worked for five years to thoroughly implement Baby-Friendly policies. Baby-Friendly designation is granted after a rigorous on-site survey is completed.

To achieve and maintain the award, a hospital must:

  1. Have a written breastfeeding policy routinely communicated to all healthcare staff
  2. Train all healthcare staff in skills necessary to implement this policy
  3. Inform all pregnant women of the benefits and management of breastfeeding
  4. Help mothers initiate breastfeeding within one hour of birth
  5. Show mothers how to breastfeed and how to maintain lactation, even if separated from their infants
  6. Give infants no food or drink other than breast milk, unless medically indicated
  7. Practice "rooming in"— allowing mothers and infants to remain together 24 hours a day
  8. Encourage breastfeeding on demand
  9. Give no pacifiers or artificial nipples to breastfeeding infants
  10. Foster the establishment of breastfeeding support groups and refer mothers to them on discharge from the medical center or clinic

staff at adventist health white memorial

As with most great efforts, it has taken a village to help make this a reality. We would like to send our heartfelt thanks to Dr. Robert Tefft, who launched us on the Baby-Friendly journey, and Sandra Maravilla, who served as project coordinator and led the team for the first four years of the project.

And for all of your hard work and tireless support, additional thanks to:

  • The Baby-Friendly Taskforce (Sandra Maravilla, Aileen Takeshita, LuWanda Paggett, Sung Song, Kay Yang, Lisa Marquez, Gloria McGowan, Maria Espinosa, Yomaira Salazar, Wendy Kim, Dolly Staples, Carisse Chan and Theresa Vidal)
  • Labor and delivery, antepartum, maternity and NICU staff
  • The Welcome Baby team
  • Doctors Kathryn Shaw, Brian Johnston, Leroy Reese, Bethany Bush, Alma Munoz, Alma Lopez, Ernie Guzman and Arezoo Fozailoff
  • The neonatal, pediatric, Loma Linda University hospitalist, obstetric and family medicine physicians
  • Mary Anne Chern, Denis Keegan and Erasmo Tony Cortez
  • John Raffoul, Pat Stoneand Blin Richards
  • Yuri Geronimo, Zulay Castillo, and Veronica Ramirez (education and training)
  • Purchasing: Jose Adame, Alfred Blancarte and Sonya Hoss
  • The marketing team and Family Focus