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Gold standard service for new mums in Lancashire

United Nations organisation UNICEF, which runs the Baby Friendly Initiative, has awarded gold standard to our Lancashire Healthy Young People and Families Service as well as the county’s Children and Family Wellbeing Service and provider Families and Babies.

The UNICEF Baby Friendly Initiative, which aims to transform healthcare for babies, their mothers and families in the UK, helps professionals to provide sensitive and effective care and support for mothers, enabling them to make informed choices about feeding their babies.

Their assessment highlights the excellent integrated working that the services carry out with maternity, perinatal mental health, speech and language and children’s services, as well as nurseries, schools and colleges; with a focus on embedding effective training for professionals and good practice across Lancashire. Lancashire and South Cumbria perinatal mother and baby unit at Chorley and South Ribble Hospital is the first nationally to begin the Baby Friendly Initiative journey.

A survey completed by UNICEF showed that 99% per cent of staff within the services are motivated to implement baby friendly standards, and mothers reported that staff were kind and considerate 98% of the time.

The report also stated that there was clear evidence of development within the services and commented their creative and innovative approach.

Sakthi Karunanithi is Director of Public Health and Wellbeing at Lancashire County Council and has been assigned Baby Friendly Guardian.

He said: “Achieving the Unicef Baby Friendly ‘Gold’ standard with flying colours is testament to the dedication and hard work of all teams across Lancashire including our Children and Family Wellbeing Service.

“Baby Friendly means we’ve demonstrated that our policies and care practices meet the gold standard for mother/ baby care practices. This means that new parents throughout our county can be assured that we are helping you and your new baby to get off to the best start.”

Michelle Lee, our Managing Director in Lancashire who oversees he teams running the Lancashire Healthy Young People and Families Service, added: “I am incredibly proud of all the services for the work they do in supporting new mums and families, and they wholeheartedly deserve to be recognised with the gold standard. This achievement is testament to the hard work of staff who are really committed to making a positive difference for families.”

Marie Longworth, Operations Manager of Families and Babies, which provides Infant Feeding Peer Support, said: “This is a wonderful achievement which truly recognises the hard work of all services and their commitment to providing the very best care to Lancashire mothers and babies. Families and Babies are extremely proud to be part of this initiative and we want to thank all involved who contributed to making this happen.”

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