December 12, 2011
HadleyStilwell salutes Kaiser Permanente!
Kaiser Permanente is the largest health care system in the U.S. caring for mothers and babies. At Partnership for a Healthier America's inaugural summit in November, Kaiser committed that by 2013, its 29 hospitals that offer maternal and child health services will be designated as Baby-Friendly (13 hospitals are already Baby-Friendly) and/or participate in The Joint Commission's Perinatal Core Measures Program. And Kaiser Permanente hospitals already have some of the highest rates of exclusive breastfeeding upon discharge.
Why am I excited about this?
1. When large health care corporations start integrating breastfeeding goals into their measureable performance plans, it impacts countless mothers and babies. And hopefully this will set a precedent for other large health care networks.
2. This will impact the unfortunately widespread access formula companies have to hospitals, since that directly opposes the new policies. Imagine instead that a new mother receives a gift bag of breastfeeding accessories such as nursing pads, lanolin, and reference materials (not written by formula companies). Hmmm... maybe even some elegant, comfortable, and functional nursing attire?!
By making this commitment to The Joint Commission, Kaiser Permanente is giving the hospital staff incentive to ensure that new mothers are exclusively breastfeeding when they leave the hospital. It's so wonderful to know that Kaiser truly understands that breastfeeding promotes the long-term health of mothers and babies.
These breastfeeding moms are warm, comfortable, and fashionable...everywhere they go!