Northern Trust presented with world-recognised Baby Friendly Award

The Causeway Hospital and community maternity services of the Northern Health and Social Care Trust have been presented with a UNICEF (United Nations Children’s Fund) Baby Friendly Award. The Award accredits facilities that adopt internationally recognised standards of best practice in the care of mothers and babies.

The Baby Friendly Initiative, set up by UNICEF and the World Health Organisation, is a global programme which provides a practical and effective way for health services to improve the care provided for all mothers and babies.

"We decided to apply for the Unicef UK's Baby Friendly Initiative as the best practice standards have been proven to increase breastfeeding rates and to improve care for all mothers” said Rosemary Kerr, Breastfeeding Co-ordinator, Northern Trust.

"Breastfeeding protects babies against a wide range of serious illnesses including gastroenteritis and respiratory infections in infancy as well as asthma, cardiovascular disease and diabetes in later life. We also know that breastfeeding reduces the mother’s risk of some cancers – although mums might be more interested in hearing that it is easier, cheaper and simply less hassle than bottle feeding,” added Rosemary.

“We will endeavour to continue to build on our achievement and provide high quality care to ensure that all our mothers and babies get off to the best possible start. Regardless of how a mother chooses to feed her baby, she can be sure that she will be supported to form a strong loving relationship with her newborn – through having maximum skin to skin contact and understanding how her baby communicates with her and needs her to respond.

“The Causeway hospital and community maternity services met all the criteria and staff were commended for the efforts made. The report stated, “it was clear to the assessment team that pregnant women and new mothers receive a very high standard of care. In particular many of the mothers interviewed reported a very high level of satisfaction with the information and support they received from the midwives”.

Congratulating the Trust on their award, Baby Friendly Initiative Programme Director, Sue Ashmore said: "We are delighted that Causeway Hospital and the greater Causeway community maternity services have achieved full Baby Friendly status.

“Surveys show us that most mothers want to breastfeed but don’t always get the support they need. Mothers at Causeway Hospital can be confident that their midwives will provide high standards of care.”

The Baby Friendly Initiative, set up by Unicef and the World Health Organisation, is a global programme which provides a practical and effective way for health services to improve the care provided for all mothers and babies. The initiative works with public services to protect, promote, and support breastfeeding and to strengthen mother-baby and family relationships. Support for these relationships is important for all babies, not only those who are breastfed.


Front row from left to right are: Rosemary Kerr, Breastfeeding Co-ordinator for Causeway Hospital and community maternity services; Janet Calvert, Health and Social Wellbeing Manager for Public Health Agency and Regional Breastfeeding lead; Sinead O’ Kane, Interim Director of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Northern Trust

Back row from left to right are: Caroline Keown, Interim Head of Midwifery and Gynaecology, Northern Trust; Caroline Diamond, Lead Midwife for Causeway Obstetrics and Gynaecology, NorthernTrust; Karen Graham, Ward Manager Causeway Hospital Maternity Unit; Alison Hume, Assistant Director of Workforce Learning and Regulation, Northern Trust; Sylvia Nixon, HUNNI Breastfeeding Peer Support Mum; Brigid Mc Keown, Lead Midwife for Community Midwifery and Public Health, Northern Trust


Rosemary Kerr, Breastfeeding Co-ordinator for Causeway Hospital and community maternity services and Janet Calvert, Health and Social Wellbeing Manager for Public Health Agency and Regional Breastfeeding lead

Page last updated:26 February 2015