Baby Friendly
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Baby Friendly

Giving babies a healthy start in life

Salinas Valley Memorial has been honored as a Baby-Friendly® Birth Facility. The physicians, nurses and staff on our Perinatal Services team have gone above and beyond to create an environment that supports successful breastfeeding. SVMHS is one of only 154 hospitals nationwide to receive this international designation.

Baby-Friendly USA is part of the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative (BFHI)—an international program of the World Health Organization and the United Nations Children's Fund. BFHI celebrates hospitals and birth centers that implement policies and practices that support parents in making informed choices about how they feed and care for their babies.

Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding

Every facility providing maternity services and care for newborn infants should:

1.  Have a written breastfeeding policy that is routinely comunicated to all health care staff.

2.  Train all health care staff in the skills necessary to implement this policy.

3.  Inform 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 perarate from their infants.

6.  Give infants no food or drink other than breastmilk, unless medically indicated.

7.  Practice rooming-in: allow mothers and infants to remain together 24 hours a day.

8.  Encourage breastfeeding on demand.

9.  Give no 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.

Read and download the entire SVMHS breastfeeding policy here.

Learn more about exceptional care for moms and newborns and childbirth classes at A schedule of events and tours can be found at Or call (831) 759-1890.