Edison, NJ – Baby-Friendly USA recently announced that Hackensack Meridian Health JFK Medical Center has received prestigious international recognition as a designated Baby-Friendly birth facility. 

“This designation is an important recognition of JFK Medical Center’s commitment to improving the health of mothers and babies who entrust us with their care.  We are grateful to the maternal child health team who led this effort and to everyone who supported them throughout the entire campus and all of our facilities,” said Amie Thornton, chief hospital executive, JFK Medical Center.

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).

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The initiative encourages and recognizes hospitals and birthing centers that offer an optimal level of care for breastfeeding mothers and their babies. Based on the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding, this prestigious international award recognizes birth facilities that offer breastfeeding mothers the information, confidence, and skills needed to successfully initiate and continue breastfeeding their babies.

“Our Mother/Baby team has taken great strides to bring about a culture within the medical center that is not only welcoming for breastfeeding mothers, but also informative and encouraging,” said Paula Lingeman, MBA, BSN, RN, director, Women’s and Children’s Services, JFK Medical Center.

JFK Medical Center offers prenatal and post-natal support, which includes Prenatal Yoga, New Mother and Breastfeeding Support Groups, Childcare classes, pre-birth education classes, tours of the birthing center and more. 

There are more than 20,000 designated Baby-Friendly hospitals and birth centers worldwide. Currently there are 575 active Baby-Friendly hospitals and birth centers in the United States and JFK Medical Center is the only hospital in Middlesex County, New Jersey with the designation.