Best Fed Beginnings

Status: Active

WHAT: Best Fed Beginnings is a first-of-its-kind, nationwide quality improvement initiative to help hospitals improve maternity care and increase the number of “Baby-Friendly”-designated hospitals in the United States.

WHO: Participants include 89 teams from around the United States.

WHEN: October 2011 to September 2014

FUNDER: This project is supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and run in close partnership with Baby-Friendly USA and the United States Breastfeeding Committee (USBC).

NICHQ'S ROLE: Facilitate three concurrent learning collaboratives that provide coaching to 89 hospitals on how to apply the Model for Improvement to improve maternity care in pursuit of Baby-Friendly designation. NICHQ is also building Baby-Friendly USA’s and the USBC’s internal quality improvement capacity, raising awareness of the World Health Organization’s Breastfeeding Hospital Initiative (BFHI) and supporting teams in establishing improved connection with community based breastfeeding coalitions.


Why I Participate Series

As part of NICHQ’s efforts to improve breastfeeding rates across the country, healthcare professionals work closely with parents to make positive changes through our projects. These stories are written by real mothers who wanted to share their experiences working with NICHQ to help improve breastfeeding support for families everywhere.

Project Success Stories

  • Read Making the Business Case for Hospitals to Support Breastfeeding Moms
  • Read How to Determine Fair Market Value for Purchasing Formula
  • Read Breastfeeding Education—Yes, There's An App for That
  • Read Breastfeeding Training Requires Creativity, Innovation
  • Read Confronting Cultural Barriers to Breastfeeding
  • Read Goodbye Nursery, Hello Rooming In
  • Read Immediate Skin-to-Skin Contact Boosts Breastfeeding Rates
  • Read Don’t Cry as Pacifiers Go Bye-Bye
  • Read How a Hospital Raised its Exclusive Breastfeeding Rates from 10 percent to 40 percent
  • Read Helping Hospitals Support Breastfeeding

“We are very proud to be the first academic medical center in South Carolina to achieve Baby-Friendly designation. This is a huge win for all the mothers and babies cared for at MUSC. The hard work and dedication of every nurse, physician and support staff who all wanted the right thing for our patients made it possible.”

Karen Driggers
Best Fed Beginnings team leader
Nurse Manager, The Medical University of South Carolina


Case Study

Learn more about the results of NICHQ's work to help improve breastfeeding support for families across the country.

View Case Study