In 2019 we awarded:
- 15 Certificates of Commitment
- 12 Stage 1 accreditations
- 24 Stage 2 accreditations
- 28 full accreditations and 65 re-accreditations
- 19 Gold Awards and 12 Gold re-validations
There are currently 92% of maternity services and 91% of health visiting services working towards Baby Friendly accreditation. In Universities there are 75% of Midwifery programmes and 24% of Health Visiting programmes working towards the award.
Overall full accreditations
In the UK the percentage of services with full Baby Friendly accreditation are:
- 62% of maternity services
- 72% of health visiting services
- Universities: 47% of Midwifery courses; 15% Health visiting courses
- We are delighted that 21 children’s centres and 12 neonatal units have also achieved full, independent accreditation.
Births taking place in fully accredited hospitals
- England 58%
- Northern Ireland 100%
- Scotland 100%
- Wales 78%
Page last updated: 10 December 2019.
This page is updated quarterly; for any further details or queries please email the Baby Friendly office.
Stages of accreditation
No current information
Facilities that have not contacted Unicef UK to engage with the Baby Friendly accreditation process, or whose previous award has lapsed due to a prolonged period of inactivity.
Facilities that have registered their intention to work towards accreditation but have not yet requested any assessments. This means that Unicef UK has no information about the standard of care they provide.
Certificate of Commitment
A certificate to mark the facility’s commitment to work towards Baby Friendly accreditation. This involves writing an action plan and infant feeding policy and will usually follow an implementation visit by a Baby Friendly assessor.
Stage 1 Accreditation
The facility has created policies and procedures to support the implementation of the standards and these have been externally assessed by Unicef UK and found to be adequate. For universities, the curriculum, lesson plans, teaching aids and materials for students are assessed.
Stage 2 Accreditation
The facility has educated their staff to implement the Baby Friendly standards and been externally assessed by Unicef UK. This assessment involves interviewing a random sample of staff (of all grades) to assess their knowledge and skills and checking the curriculum, training records and internal audit results.
For universities, a sample of students who have undertaken the course for which accreditation is being sought are interviewed to ascertain whether they have the skills and knowledge to practice in line with Baby Friendly standards. University courses are accredited following a successful Stage 2 assessment.
Stage 3 leading to full accreditation
The facility has implemented the Baby Friendly standards and has been externally assessed by Unicef UK. This assessment involves interviewing mothers about the care they have received and reviewing policies, guidance and internal audits.
Full Accreditation - Re-accredited
Accreditation lasts for 2 years after which a re-assessment of all the standards takes place. Subsequently re-assessments take place every 1-5 years depending on how well the facility is deemed to be maintaining the standards.
Suspension occurs following the re-assessment of an accredited facility where care was found to be below the standard required. This is to allow the facility to improve care prior to another re-assessment.
A scheduled reassessment has not taken place due to significant issues within the facility for example; re-organisation, re-location or serious illness of a key member of staff. Therefore we have no recent information against which to assess the standard of care provided. Facilities that are designated “re-assessment pending” are no longer considered to be fully accredited.
In a university this may be due to challenges with university curriculum re-validation cycles.
This also applies to any services who have not been able to have their scheduled assessment due to the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020.
Further assessment required
Several criteria at re-assessment of an accredited facility have not been met and a further re-assessment is required to take place before the award can be confirmed.
Scroll through for selected photos of newly accredited and re-accredited facilities from 2016 and 2017. We would love to hear the story of how you achieved full Baby Friendly accreditation. To submit, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, with the following information: unit name, date of accreditation, details of the biggest challenge you faced and your proudest moment in your accreditation journey, along with a photo.