Hedrick Medical Center has become the first North Central Missouri – and 18th hospital in the state – to earn Missouri Show-Me 5 recognition from the Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services (DHSS). The award recognizes Hedrick Medical Center as a center of adoption of evidence-based maternity care practices that support breastfeeding. The hospital received its award from DHSS during a ceremony on July 10 in The Gardens at Hedrick Medical Center.

“Hedrick Medical Center is committed to providing the highest quality of maternity care. We are focused on helping new moms meet their breastfeeding goals, and providing an effective path to the best care practices,” said Steve Schieber, CEO of Hedrick Medical Center and the Saint Luke’s Critical Access Region. “We are extremely proud of our hospital and maternity care team for achieving this important recognition.”

The Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services designates that Missouri “Show-Me 5” hospital practices include:

Helping mothers initiate breastfeeding within the first hour of birth; Practicing “rooming-in” and allowing infants to stay in the same room as moms; Giving infants no food or drink other than breast milk, unless medically indicated; Not giving pacifiers or artificial nipples to breastfeeding infants; and Fostering the establishment of breastfeeding support groups and refer mothers to them on discharge.

Hedrick Medical Center underwent a review by the department to receive the recognition. The program was designed in response to the U.S. Surgeon General’s 2011 Call to Action to Support Breastfeeding and recognizes maternity care practices designed to support breastfeeding initiation and duration. Only 17 other hospitals in the state of Missouri have achieved this prestigious designation since 2012.