MPFT retains UNICEF UK Baby Friendly Initiative Gold award

A highly prestigious accreditation has once again been awarded to Midlands Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (MPFT), in recognition of the support provided to parents and babies in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent.

The Trust’s 0-19 services (Health Visiting and School Nursing) have achieved Baby Friendly Initiative Gold revalidation by UNICEF UK.

The re-accreditation follows an audit of the service, which provides advice and support to families across the county, from pregnancy up until a child is 19.

MPFT is one just a few community trusts in the country to have not only achieved the Gold award, but also to have maintained it.

The Trust was initially awarded the UNICEF UK Baby Friendly Initiative Gold Award 12 months ago and its report acknowledges the hard work of staff in continuing to provide a high-quality service in spite of the challenges faced during Covid-19.

The report states: “The service is commended for the support and care given to babies, mothers and their families during the pandemic. Despite enormous service pressures, the mandated contacts have been maintained.”

The UNICEF Baby Friendly Initiative is a global campaign by the World Health Organisation and the United Nations Children’s Fund which recognises that implementing best practices in the health service and wider community children’s services is crucial to the success of breastfeeding.

Claire Bailey, Lead for MPFT’s Children and Families services said: “I am absolutely thrilled that we have once again achieved Gold award status. This is a very prestigious accreditation that is very difficult to attain, so to have retained it during what has continued to be a hugely challenging time in light of the Covid-19 pandemic is fantastic.

“None of this could have happened without the incredible commitment and hard work of a dedicated team, in particular our Infant Feeding Leads Pauline Evans and Shami Shafi, who strive each day to provide the best possible service to families living in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent. I am immensely proud of them, and they should rightly feel proud of each other and themselves for what they have achieved.”

More information about the Trust’s 0-19 services (Health Visiting and School Nursing) can be found at www.mpft.nhs.uk/services/health-visiting-and-school-nursing

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