Redhill-based First Community achieves ‘outstanding’ result in UNICEF Baby Friendly assessment

Published on 07/02/2017

First Community Health and Care has been highly commended and gained re-accreditation following its reassessment of UNICEF of the World Health Organisation’s ‘Baby Friendly Initiative’. UNICEF reviewed the quality of the services, advice and support of First Community’s health visiting team, which works with new parents and babies across east Surrey. The health visiting team, led by Sue Ashfield, infant nutrition specialist, comprises heath visitors, staff nurses and community nursery nurses.

The assessment team report said that pregnant women and new mothers receive a very high standard of care. The assessors were very impressed by the degree of collaborative working across services.

They also assessed, for the first time, all of east Surrey’s 10 Sure Start Children’s Centres, which also met all of the criteria relating to the prestigious ‘Baby Friendly’ award. All mothers interviewed spoke warmly of their centres and the staff.  

Anna Wood, lead UNICEF assessor said:  “Baby Cafés are highly valued, with many mothers commending the support and the individuals providing it. Antenatal sessions also received a number of positive comments, with mothers citing particular information they had found to be helpful.”

Trudy Mills, Associate Director for Children’s Services at First Community said: ‘This UNICEF assessment is acknowledgement of the high quality of services we provide new parents in east Surrey to ensure babies have the best possible start to life. I would like to say thank you to my colleagues in the health visiting team for their continued hard work and dedicated to the health and well-being of local families across east Surrey.

First Community is an award-winning social enterprise which delivers front-line NHS services across east Surrey, providing first-rate care through first-rate people offering first-rate value to the community. 

Surrey County Council Sure Start Children Centres are only the sixth council in the country to receive this prestigious award from UNICEF.

The Baby Friendly Initiative is a worldwide programme of the World Health Organisation   and UNICEF to ensure health care organisations offer the highest standards of care for pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers and babies. The aims of the programme are for babies across the globe to have the best start in life.

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For more information contact: Jenny Rawlinson or Eleanor Stock, Communication Team, First Community Health and Care, 01737 775462