HACKENSACK MERIDIAN HEALTH – JERSEY SHORE UNIVERSITY MEDICAL CENTER RECOGNIZED FOR SUPPORTING BREASTFEEDING MOTHERS AT WORK
Neptune, NJ, May 16, 2017 – In an effort to commend, celebrate and increase the number of NJ worksites that support breastfeeding employees, the New Jersey Breastfeeding Coalition (NJBC) has selected Hackensack Meridian Health-Jersey Shore University Medical Center (JSUMC), as a “NJ Breastfeeding Friendly Worksite”. The award was presented at the Neptune, NJ hospital.
This is the 1st hospital in NJ to be recognized by the NJBC for breastfeeding supportive practices including providing the availability of reasonable breaks to express milk or to nurse their child and access to a private space for expressing milk or nursing their child. Studies show that simple worksite support practices increase the duration of breastfeeding among employed mothers. Research also shows that breastfed babies have fewer illnesses contributing to less employee absenteeism.
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that all babies be exclusively breastfed for the first six months with breastfeeding to continue, with the introduction of solid foods, at least until the baby is 12 months old. Abundant research has revealed short term and lifelong health benefits of breastfeeding for mother and child. However, many mothers cite return to work as a reason for early discontinuation of breastfeeding.
“I’m extremely grateful,” said Kellyn Riedemann, an Outcomes Analyst at JSUMC. “It was important to me to be able to keep up a full supply of breastmilk for my 1 year old son. In addition, I met other breastfeeding moms in our private room and was able to provide support to new breastfeeding moms as they were just returning to work.”
Joyce (McKeever) Thompson, Clinical Program Manager at JSUMC said, “It is very gratifying to provide our team members with a clean, private place to pump their milk for their babies’ right at the worksite. This allows team members to feel comfortable returning to work in a supportive environment that encourages breastfeeding as the best nutrition for babies. We’ve provided this support since 1992.”
The NJBC encourages all NJ employers to learn more about becoming a breastfeeding-friendly worksite and then to complete the simple self-assessment at http://breastfeedingnj.org/breastfeeding-friendly-worksite-recognition-program/ .
The New Jersey Breastfeeding Coalition is a collaboration of health professionals and community representatives whose mission is to improve the health of New Jersey families by working collaboratively to promote, protect and support breastfeeding. For more information about the NJBC, visit www.breastfeedingnj.org.