East Ohio Regional Hospital Receives International Recognition

Monday, October 13, 2014

East Ohio Regional Hospital has received the prestigious international recognition as a Baby-Friendly Designated birth facility.

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 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.

“We are honored to be recognized as the first Baby-Friendly hospital in the Ohio Valley, and this international recognition speaks to the high level of care we give our patients at The Birthplace,” said Bernie Albertini, vice president and chief administrative officer of EORH. “This award acknowledges our staff’s dedication to make mother and infant bonding a priority.”

There are more than 20,000 designated Baby-Friendly hospitals and birth centers worldwide. Currently there are 199 active Baby-Friendly hospitals and birth centers in the United States. The “Baby-Friendly” 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.

Earlier this year, EORH’s Birthplace underwent several technology upgrades to further mother and infant bonding as well. With the use of wireless fetal monitors, laboring mothers now have the option to move freely during labor before delivering in new birthing beds equipped with numerous comfort features, such as adjustable accessory devices for back support. Once the baby is born, the hospital’s portable nursery system allows babies to be warmed, weighed, and resuscitated at the mother's bedside, eliminating the need for the infant to be taken to a separate nursery room and keeping the mother and baby together. This decrease in separation promotes an environment for positive breastfeeding outcomes.

“Parents report they are more confident and rested when their baby is safe, comfortable, and content at their bedside,” said Lynette DeBertrand, nurse manager of The BirthPlace. “We provide single room, family-centered care for our patients.”

Ohio Valley Medical Center, located in Wheeling, W. Va., and East Ohio Regional Hospital, located in Martins Ferry, Ohio, are a 340-bed combined organization with more than 1,600 employees providing the area’s only comprehensive orthopedic centers of excellence, behavioral and mental health services and board certified emergency services on both sides of the Ohio River. We are the Ohio Valley's community hospitals.