MMC Selected to Join Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative

May 21, 2015

“We are very excited to be at the forefront of this initiative,” said Dana Haynes, Nursery Nurse Manager at Minden Medical Center. “It will enhance our knowledge and ability to best assist our patients in making the most informed decision regarding their feeding practice. We will also be given the opportunity to learn from some of the top experts on how to support families on continued breastfeeding. The ultimate goal is healthier babies and mothers in our community.”

As part of this effort, Minden Medical Center will receive ongoing support in breastfeeding practices from experienced coaches, as well as training and resource support in lactation education. The effort supports evidence-based practices for prenatal and maternity settings known as the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding and the Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative, an effort to encourage and recognize hospitals and birthing centers that complete the Ten Steps. The Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative, launched in the United States in 1996, designates as “Baby-Friendly” hospitals that meet the criteria for women to initiate and continue with breastfeeding.

Minden Medical Center and The Women’s Clinic are now providing more support than ever before to nursing moms and expecting moms. Beginning in June, a Breastfeeding Support Group will be held the first and third Thursday from 10:30-11:30am at The Women’s Clinic ultrasound waiting room. The group will be facilitated by Lactation Consultant, Kelli Waller, in a relaxed and comfortable conversation setting about breastfeeding. Nursing babies are welcome and more information may be received by calling 318-272-5194.

A Breastfeeding Mentor Program is also being developed. A MMC Breastfeeding Mentor is a woman who has had a successful breastfeeding experience and is interested in supporting other women in her community to nurse their babies. She focuses on helping new mothers feel confident and comfortable about choosing to breastfeed and provides accurate information and reduces fears. MMC Breastfeeding Mentors will be paired with expecting and new moms to provide practical support to become successful in breastfeeding. If you are interested in becoming a mentor, you can sign up at

Monthly Breastfeeding Classes are continuing to be held on the third Tuesday from 6-8pm in the MMC Education Building located at 729 Main Street downtown Minden. Topics covered during the class include techniques for successful breastfeeding, troubleshooting problems and education on the benefits of breastfeeding. This class is mandatory for The Women’s Clinic patients to attend so they may make the most informed decision. All participants are included in a drawing for a FREE 4D ultrasound provided by The Women's Clinic. Call 371-5660 for more information.

EMPower is a hospital-based quality improvement initiative focusing on maternity care practices leading to Baby-Friendly designation. The EMPower Team is led by Abt Associates, Carolina Global Breastfeeding Institute, and the Center for Public Health Quality. Funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, EMPower is aimed at increasing breastfeeding rates throughout the United States and promoting and supporting optimal breastfeeding practices toward the ultimate goal of improving the public’s health.