In 2015, the State Perinatal Program was awarded an Association of State and Territorial Health Officials grant to address increasing breastfeeding practices in birthing facilities. As a result, the Alabama Breastfeeding Initiative (ABI) was born. To date, Alabama has three Baby-Friendly, USA certified hospitals: East Alabama Medical Center in Opelika, Northeast Alabama Medical Center in Anniston, and the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Six hospitals in Alabama (see below) have received Enhancing Maternity Practices (EMPower) grant funding to support them in the achievement of Baby-Friendly, USA designation. An additional twenty-five of Alabama’s delivering hospitals are participating in the Alabama Breastfeeding Initiative to promote breastfeeding as the best source of nutrition for infants less than one year of age based on the “Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding,” as defined by the World Health Organization.
The ABI connects hospitals with each other and provides assistance to enhance breastfeeding efforts. A work group meets quarterly by conference call to discuss progress and lessons learned. Participating hospitals submit monthly data through a secure portal in order to track progress.
The ABI, in collaboration with a multitude of partners, is committed to providing evidence-based resources to promote and support optimal breastfeeding practices. The ultimate goal of the ABI is to reduce morbidity and mortality, decrease healthcare costs, and improve the overall health of every citizen in Alabama.
Data should be submitted through the secure Learning Content Management System by the 15th of each month for the prior month’s data.
For more information, contact Amy Stratton @ Amy.Stratton@adph.state.al.us
Six EMPOWER Hospitals
Thomas Hospital – Fairhope
Monroe County – Monroeville
Princeton BMC – Birmingham
Madison Hospital – Madison