No need to fear, help for breastfeeding mothers is here!
The Noreen Stonor Drexel Birthing Center at Newport Hospital is designated as "Baby Friendly" by the World Health Organization and UNICEF. It is one of only 53 hospitals in the nation to receive this award. The designation recognizes Newport Hospital's commitment to providing an optimal environment for the promotion, protection and support of breastfeeding.
Sandy Gabriel, RNC, an international board-certified lactation consultant at the Noreen Stonor Drexel Birthing Center, has been working with new mothers at the hospital for over ten years. She is proud of the environment of support and encouragement that new mothers enjoy there.
Over 70 percent of new mothers at Newport Hospital breast feed. Gabriel attributes this high number to the perseverance of the new moms, but also to the incredible support of the hospital staff.
She says, "Our breastfeeding program is very much a staff-driven one. Sometimes, breastfeeding can be frustrating and overwhelming for new mothers. Our hospital staff is there to offer, not only the correct information about the health benefits, but more importantly, the support and encouragement that motivates the mother to continue to breast feed."
Mothers who choose to formula feed receive the same care and education at the hospital. Our staff is very supportive of a mother's informed choice not to breastfeed, as it is a personal decision.
Employees who are breastfeeding, whether they gave birth at the hospital or not, are assisted. Gabriel explains that the hospital has a supportive program for breastfeeding employees that provides them with the space and time to pump their breast milk during the work day. She hopes to expand this program to other Lifespan affiliates, and it appears she is well on her way.