Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Is Your Hospital Listed Here?

As of July 2009, there are 83 hospitals in the US that have been evaluated and deemed "Baby Friendly" by the Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative.

To be included on the list, facilities must meet 10 criteria, created by the World Health Organization, encourage breastfeeding by helping mothers initiate breastfeeding, appropriately training all staff, avoiding formula unless medically indicated, allowing “rooming in,” and other practices. These steps are also included among the Ten Steps for Mother-Friendly Care outlined for the Mother-Friendly Childbirth Initiative.

I'm surprised by this list -- I thought that a few more Boston area hospitals would be listed, and the single one that did is not the one I anticipated.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Hospital Based Doulas, Johns Hopkins

Here is a quick and simple article about how hospital-based doulas can enrich a woman's birthing experience. Note that the experience is mother-centered; the doulas do not have an ideal birth in mind for the mom, but they are there to support the mother and her needs as she defines them.

Unfortunately, the only two Boston area birth center/hospital-based doula programs have been wildly cut in the recession, with budgets for only the absolute, highest-risk mothers.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

More Labor Support is Necessary in Canada -- and in the US, too!

From The Daily News out of Canada, an article on how labor support can reduce surgical births by as much as 20%.

I'm curious as to what guidelines the Canadian Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists feel aren't being followed, guidelines that are aimed towards lowering unnecessary surgeries. From what I admit can be a jaded point of view, I'd never think that the American College of OB/GYNs would describe any surgeries as unnecessary, especially because hospital guidelines which dictate how a woman should labor seem to be in place for lowering unnecessary liability more than anything else. Hospital c-section is considered the gold standard of life-saving hospital care, which I think it can be when c-sections are truly necessary - but not when they are the self-fulfilling prophesies of labor practices that are not mother- and birth-friendly.