Practices Proven to be Effective

The Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding was developed by an international team of experts as part of the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative. It consists of practices that have positively demonstrated improved effectiveness in breastfeeding initiation and duration. Baby-Friendly hospitals such as Corona Regional Medical Center must follow strict adherence to these steps in order to receive and maintain their Baby-Friendly status.

The Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding

  1. Have a written breastfeeding policy that is routinely communicated to the healthcare staff.
  2. Train all healthcare staff members in the skills necessary to implement the policy.
  3. Educate all pregnant women about the benefits and management of breastfeeding.
  4. Help mothers initiate breastfeeding within one hour of birth.
  5. Show mothers how to breastfeed and how to maintain lactation, even if they are separated from their infants.
  6. Give infants no food or drink other than breast milk, unless medically indicated.
  7. Practice rooming in – allow mothers and infants to remain together for 24 hours.
  8. Encourage breastfeeding on demand.
  9. Do not give pacifiers or artificial nipples to breastfeeding infants.
  10. Foster the establishment of breastfeeding support groups and refer mothers to them on discharge from the hospital or birth center.

The Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding has been endorsed by a number of organizations, including:

  • Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine
  • Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
  • American Academy of Family Physicians
  • American Academy of Nurses
  • American Academy of Pediatrics
  • American College of Nurse-Midwives
  • Association of Women’s Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • National WIC Association
  • U.S. Breastfeeding Committee
  • U.S. Preventive Services Task Force
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