Achieving Sustainability: Health Services

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This section guides services through the Achieving Sustainability standards and the Gold Award, designed to help embed high quality care for the long term.

Information on the Achieving Sustainability standards, application process and revalidation and annual reporting can be found below, along with further reading on the themes of the standards.

To learn if your service is eligible to go for Gold and how the Achieving Sustainability assessment works, view the ‘Should we go for the Gold Award?’ page. You can also read through our collection of case studies to hear how the Gold Award has transformed services’ care and culture.

Achieving Sustainability Standards: Themes

Theme 1: Leadership

Develop a leadership team that promotes the Baby Friendly standards

  • There is a named Baby Friendly lead/team with sufficient knowledge, skills and hours to meet their objectives
  • There is a mechanism for the Baby Friendly lead/team to remain up-to-date with their education and skills
  • A Baby Friendly Guardian with sufficient seniority and engagement is in post
  • The leadership structures support proportionate responsibility and accountability
  • All relevant managers are educated to support the maintenance of the standards.

Theme 2: Culture

Foster an organisational culture that protects the Baby Friendly standards

  • There is support for ongoing staff learning
  • There are mechanisms in place to support a positive culture, such as staff recognition schemes, mechanisms for staff to feedback concerns and systems to enable parents’ and families’ feedback to be heard and acted upon.

Theme 3: Monitoring

Construct robust monitoring processes to support the Baby Friendly standards – mechanisms to ensure that:

  • Baby Friendly audits are carried out regularly according to service needs
  • All relevant data is available and is accessed
  • Data is analysed effectively and collectively to give an overall picture
  • Action plans are developed in response to findings
  • Relevant data is routinely reported to the leadership team
  • Relevant data is routinely reported to Unicef UK.

Theme 4: Progression

Continue to develop the service in order to sustain the Baby Friendly standards

  • The service demonstrates innovation and progress
  • There is evidence to demonstrate that outcomes have improved
  • The needs of babies, their mothers and families are met through effective integrated working

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