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Gunnison Valley Health Receives Baby-Friendly designation

Gunnison Valley Health recently achieved Baby-Friendly designation following a rigorous review process conducted by Baby-Friendly USA, the organization responsible for bestowing this certification in the United States. This distinguished honor demonstrates that Gunnison Valley Health is adhering to the highest standards of care for breastfeeding mothers and their babies.

Gunnison Valley Health CEO, Jason Amrich, said that the designation reflects the health system’s commitment to ongoing quality improvement.

“The process to achieve this designation was rigorous and I commend Kelsey Weaver and all of the Family Birth Center team who were involved in the process,” Amrich said. “This designation reflects our commitment to ensuring that mothers in the Gunnison Valley have access to care that meets the highest standards and is aligned with global best practices.”

The standards of care are built on the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding, a set of evidence-based practices recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) for optimal infant feeding support in the precious first days of a newborn’s life.

The positive health effects of breastfeeding are well documented and widely recognized by health authorities throughout the world. The Surgeon General’s 2011 Call to Action to Support Breastfeeding stated that “Breast milk is uniquely suited to the human infant’s nutritional needs and is a live substance with unparalleled immunological and anti-inflammatory properties that protect against a host of illnesses and diseases for both mothers and children.”

Gunnison Valley Health Maternal Child Coordinator, Kelsey Weaver, said that the initiative ensures that mothers are bolstered with the education, information and the skills necessary to successfully initiate and continue breastfeeding their babies.

“The hospital experience strongly influences a mother’s ability to start and continue breastfeeding,” Weaver said. “I am proud to be a part of a health system dedicated to ensuring that mothers delivering in our facility who intend to breastfeed, as well as those who cannot or decide not to breastfeed, are fully supported.”

To learn more about Gunnison Valley Health’s Family Birth Center and parent support programs, visit