Nottinghamshire Healthcare's Healthy Family Team Service has been awarded the Unicef Baby Friendly Initiative (BFI) Gold Sustainability Award recently. Achieving this prestigious award demonstrates sustainable leadership, a positive culture, ongoing monitoring and continued progression across the service all of which are embedded into practice, providing a solid foundation to promote, protect and support breastfeeding and support close loving relationships between parents and babies.
“After two days of assessment and talking to 47 mothers receiving care the Baby Friendly assessors were very positive in their feedback, and awarded the Trust the Gold Award” explained Theresa Drozdowska, Infant Feeding Lead (IFL).
The BFI team identified the Leadership team’s strength in understanding the importance of supporting the Baby Friendly Standards in order to achieve a commitment across both staff teams and management. The assessment team praised the Infant Feeding Leads in their strategic role and emphasised the innovative Infant Feeding training that staff consider to be inspiring and motivating. Mothers affirmed their appreciation of the Specialist Breastfeeding Clinics where the IFL’s deliver more complex care.
Examination of the breastfeeding culture around the Baby Friendly standards was assessed with over 40% of staff completing a Survey Monkey questionnaire. Results revealed that staff felt able to contribute ideas and felt valued by the service. Over 95% of mothers interviewed asserted that 95% of staff were always kind and caring – a glowing reflection of the dedication shown by staff.
The assessors were impressed with the accurate breastfeeding data collection within our Trust, and particularly how local challenges are addressed in each area, responding to the individual needs of our diverse areas.
Finally, the BFI team assessed progression and how the Trust will continue to improve and build on services offered to mothers to support their breastfeeding journeys. “BFI were impressed with the initiatives showcased,” said Alison. “But it doesn’t end here – in order to maintain this Gold standard we need to present a yearly portfolio to evidence ongoing progression and maintenance of standards, along with audits to reflect continued high care standards and reinforce staff knowledge.”
John Brewin, Chief Executive of the Trust commented: "We are delighted at this very positive outcome. Breastfeeding is so important to new mums and it is great that our team are helping people bond with their babies and have support close, loving relationships within families."