Newswise — The University of Chicago Medicine has received international recognition for having a birth facility that offers exceptional care to breastfeeding mothers and their babies. The Comer Children's Hospital Family Birth Center has been designated a Baby-Friendly birth facility by Baby-Friendly USA. 

"Baby-Friendly designation allows our patients and their families to know that UChicago Medicine adheres to the highest standards regarding the babies and mothers in our care," said Emily Lowder, Vice President of Comer Children's Hospital and Advanced Practice Nursing Services. "This designation should be something that all faculty and staff are truly honored to have been a part in obtaining." 

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

There are more than 20,000 designated Baby-Friendly hospitals and birth centers worldwide. Currently there are 491 active Baby-Friendly hospitals and birth centers in the United States. Re-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.