In collaboration with the Kentucky WIC program and University of Louisville Hospital, we achieved Strategy #1, of “The Strategic Plan for Improving Breastfeeding Rates in Kentucky:” Increase the number of hospitals that implement skin to skin policies in Kentucky from 19% to 25%. The goal was surpassed and 100% of Kentucky birthing hospitals were trained and committed to implementing the practice. Many have already implemented Kangaroo Care while others have set “go live” dates for the near future. Hospitals who have begun Kangaroo Care have reported increases (some quite dramatic!) in their breastfeeding rates.
Kentucky currently has one hospital designated Baby-Friendly, St. Elizabeth Medical Center in Edgewood, KY. Congratulations to Norton Suburban Hospital, University of Louisville Hospital and University of Kentucky Chandler Hospital on their commitments to achieving the designation in the near future. UK Hospital was recently awarded a Best Fed Beginnings grant to help improve maternity care and increase the number of Baby-Friendly hospitals in the United States. 90 grants were awarded nation wide and UK was the only Kentucky hospital to receive funding. We greatly appreciate the commitments these hospitals have made to health and breastfeeding experiences of their moms and babies.