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East of England first for Southend’s neonatal unit

17 November 2015

Health Care

Southend University Hospital’s neonatal unit has been awarded Stage 2 accreditation of the UNICEF Baby Friendly Initiative neonatal enhanced standards, becoming the only unit in the east of England – and one of only four units in the country – to do so.

Stage 2 accreditation involves the assessment of staff knowledge and skills and is achieved when a service demonstrates that all staff have been educated according to their role, and that this training has prepared staff to care for mothers and families effectively.

The unit has successfully met all of the standards for Stage 2 accreditation just eight months after achieving Stage 1, the assessment for which ensures the necessary policies, guidelines, information and mechanisms are in place to allow health care providers to effectively implement the Baby Friendly standards.

Neonatal unit lead nurse, Elaine McInally, said: "We're delighted to have been awarded Stage 2 accreditation. It's an enormous achievement for the team who continue to work really hard to provide exceptional care and support for babies and their families."

The team is now looking forward to working towards Stage 3 which they hope to achieve in the new year.