Baby-friendly Hospital Initiative

The Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative (BFHI) is a research-tested intervention designed to implement hospital policies and procedures that support optimal breastfeeding practices.

The following are benefits to becoming a mother-friendly employer:

  • Increased productivity among employees with young children
  • Reduced turnover
  • Lower recruitment and training costs
  • Lower absenteeism due to a sick child
  • Higher morale
  • Enhanced loyalty
  • Recruitment incentive
  • Improved positive image in the community
  • Lower and fewer health-insurance claims

The Coalition is committed to helping employers become Mother-Friendly workplaces. If your organization is interested in becoming a mother-friendly employer, this please follow the link below and complete the application.

Mother-friendly Employer Application
Breastfeeding is the gold standard of infant feeding due to multiple health benefits to mother and baby. This method of feeding is endorsed by many professional groups including The World Health Organization, more about the American Academy of Pediatrics, order the USDA, site and many others. South Carolina has encouraged breastfeeding and acknowledged it as a public right.

Breastfeeding support at the workplace can positively impact the bottom line by lowering healthcare costs, enhancing productivity, decreasing absenteeism, improving employee satisfaction, increasing retention and improving corporate image. The workforce is changing dramatically. More than 50% of adult women are in the workforce. Two-thirds of new employees will be women starting or returning to work. Seventy five percent of working women become pregnant during their working lives.

The Coalition is committed to helping employers become Mother-Friendly workplaces. We can support you through the process by providing you with: copies of The Business Case for Breastfeeding (a comprehensive toolkit for developing a workplace program), resources in your community, example programs and policies from other Mother-Friendly Employers, and in some cases – grant funding to facilitate the process.


Support — Employers will have a draft lactation support policy that is at least in the beginning stages of the adoption process. After 1 yr, the policy must be in place to maintain Mother-Friendly designation.

Time – Employees must have flexible break time to maintain lactation

Education – The lactation support policy and program should be communicated initially to all employees, and then continue to be communicated to pregnant employees. Employer provides a list of community resources for breastfeeding support.

Place – To support women who need to use a breast pump at work, employers should make reasonable efforts to provide a place for using the pump. The space must be clean, private, have adequate lighting, an electrical outlet, and not be a bathroom. It should have access nearby to a clean safe water source and a sink.


  • Website listing as Mother-Friendly Employer on:
    • South Carolina Breastfeeding Coalition website (
  • Framed Certificate indicating Mother-Friendly Employer designation
  • “Breastfeeding Welcome Here” Decal for display
  • Invitation to recognition ceremony at Coalition October Celebration
  • Multiple employer benefits

Contact Dr. Leslie Myers, Public Relations Officer of the Coalition for more information:

Breastfeeding Protects Babies

  1. Early breast milk is liquid gold – Known as liquid gold, gynecologist colostrum (coh-LOSS-trum) is the thick yellow first breast milk that you make during pregnancy and just after birth. This milk is very rich in nutrients and antibodies to protect your baby. Although your baby only gets a small amount of colostrum at each feeding, it matches the amount his or her tiny stomach can hold. (Visit How to Know Your Baby is Getting Enough Milk to see just how small your newborn’s tummy is!)
  2. Your breast milk changes as your baby grows – Colostrum changes into what is called mature milk. By the third to fifth day after birth, this mature breast milk has just the right amount of fat, sugar, water, and protein to help your baby continue to grow. It is a thinner type of milk than colostrum, but it provides all of the nutrients and antibodies your baby needs.
  3. Breast milk is easier to digest – For most babies — especially premature babies — breast milk is easier to digest than formula. The proteins in formula are made from cow’s milk and it takes time for babies’ stomachs to adjust to digesting them.
  4. Breast milk fights disease – The cells, hormones, and antibodies in breast milk protect babies from illness. This protection is unique; formula cannot match the chemical makeup of human breast milk. In fact, among formula-fed babies, ear infections and diarrhea are more common. Formula-fed babies also have higher risks of:
    • Necrotizing (nek-roh-TEYE-zing) enterocolitis (en-TUR-oh-coh-lyt-iss), a disease that affects the gastrointestinal tract in preterm infants.
    • Lower respiratory infections
    • Atopic dermatitis, a type of skin rash
    • Asthma
    • Obesity
    • Type 1 and type 2 diabetes
    • Childhood leukemia

Mothers Benefit From Breastfeeding

  1. Life can be easier when you breastfeed – Breastfeeding may take a little more effort than formula feeding at first. But it can make life easier once you and your baby settle into a good routine. Plus, when you breastfeed, there are no bottles and nipples to sterilize. You do not have to buy, measure, and mix formula. And there are no bottles to warm in the middle of the night! You can satisfy your baby’s hunger right away when breastfeeding.
  2. Breastfeeding can save money – Formula and feeding supplies can cost well over $1,500 each year, depending on how much your baby eats. Breastfed babies are also sick less often, which can lower health care costs.
  3. Breastfeeding can feel great – Physical contact is important to newborns. It can help them feel more secure, warm, and comforted. Mothers can benefit from this closeness, as well. Breastfeeding requires a mother to take some quiet relaxed time to bond. The skin-to-skin contact can boost the mother’s oxytocin (OKS-ee-TOH-suhn) levels. Oxytocin is a hormone that helps milk flow and can calm the mother.
  4. Breastfeeding can be good for the mother’s health, too – Breastfeeding is linked to a lower risk of these health problems in women:
    1. Type 2 diabetes
    2. Breast cancer
    3. Ovarian cancer
    4. Postpartum depression

    Experts are still looking at the effects of breastfeeding on osteoporosis and weight loss after birth. Many studies have reported greater weight loss for breastfeeding mothers than for those who don’t. But more research is needed to understand if a strong link exists.

  5. Mothers miss less work – Breastfeeding mothers miss fewer days from work because their infants are sick less often.

Breastfeeding Benefits Society

  • The nation benefits overall when mothers breastfeed. Recent research shows that if 90 percent of families breastfed exclusively for 6 months, nearly 1,000 deaths among infants could be prevented. The United States would also save $13 billion per year — medical care costs are lower for fully breastfed infants than never-breastfed infants. Breastfed infants typically need fewer sick care visits, prescriptions, and hospitalizations.
  • Breastfeeding also contributes to a more productive workforce since mothers miss less work to care for sick infants. Employer medical costs are also lower.
  • Breastfeeding is also better for the environment. There is less trash and plastic waste compared to that produced by formula cans and bottle supplies.

Breastfeeding During an Emergency

When an emergency occurs, breastfeeding can save lives:

  • Breastfeeding protects babies from the risks of a contaminated water supply.
  • Breastfeeding can help protect against respiratory illnesses and diarrhea. These diseases can be fatal in populations displaced by disaster.
  • Breast milk is the right temperature for babies and helps to prevent hypothermia, when the body temperature drops too low.
  • Breast milk is readily available without needing other supplies.

Courtesy of Why Breastfeeding is Important from

Sharon Spriggs Gold Ribbon Award Winners

Sarah Taylor, tadalafil MD
Jennifer Hudson, sildenafil MD
Carla Wham, BSN, RN, IBCLC, ICCE

Sandra Berryhill, BSN, RN, IBCLC

Rachel A. Miller, BSN, RN, IBCLC

Starla McGorty, BSN, RNC, IBCLC, RLC

Teresa Hill, MS, RD, LD

Marshall Goldstein, MD
Leslie MacTaggart Myers, DNP, APRN, ANP-BC

Ann Calandro, MSN, RNC-MNN, IBCLC

SC Breastfeeding Action Committee
SC Representative Harry B. “Chip” Limehouse III

Donna McRee, RN, IBCLC

Jean Rhodes, CNM, PhD, IBCLC

Thomas Arthur Payne, MD

Diana Roberts, RN, IBCLC

Sharon Spriggs, IBCLC

Greta M. Harper, MD

M. Sharada Pai, MD

Janice L. Bacon, MD

Kelly Price Rainwater, MD

SCBFC Leadership 2016

Co-Chair: Julee Krechel, pharm  IBCLC

Co-Chair:  Open

SecretaryKatie Hodge

Treasurer: Rachel Miller, stuff BSN, RN, IBCLC, RLC

Public Relations: Naomi Hambleton, IBCLC, LLLL

BOI Liaison:  Carla Wham

SC WIC BF CoordinatorEllen B Babb, PhD, MPH, RD, LDSC

Historian: Lin Cook, IBCLC

Education Committee

Chair: Jennifer Black Piszcz, LCCE, CBS
Committee positions open

Membership Committee

Chair: Alicia Stephenson
Committee positions open

Advocacy Committee

Chair: Katie Reitman
Committee positions open

SCBC Brochure final-page-001 SCBC Brochure final-page-0022016 South Carolina Breastfeeding Coalition Conference
October 17th and 18th
North Charleston, rehabilitation SCscbc logo


 We are proud to present our speakers

Linda J. Smith, MPH, FACCE, IBCLC, FILCA is a lactation consultant, childbirth educator, author, and internationally-known consultant on breastfeeding and birthing issues. Linda is ILCA’s liaison to the World Health Organization’s Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative and consultant to INFACT Canada/IBFAN North America.  As a La Leche League Leader and Lamaze-certified Childbirth Educator, she provided education and clinical support to diverse families over 40 years in 9 cities in the USA and Canada. Linda has worked in a 3-hospital system in Texas, a public health agency in Virginia, and served as Breastfeeding coordinator for the Ohio Department of Health. Linda was a founder of IBLCE, founder and past board member of ILCA, and is a delegate to the United States Breastfeeding Committee from the American Breastfeeding Institute. Linda holds a Masters Degree in Public Health and is currently an Adjunct Instructor at the Boonshoft School of Medicine at Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio. She owns the Bright Future Lactation Resource Centre.


Bright Future Lactation Resource Centre

6540 Cedarview Ct., Dayton, OH 45459-1214 USA

Phone (937) 438-9458  Skype CoachLindaSmith

email  Web site

Eliza Agrest Veradi, MD, IBCLC, FAAP, born in St. Petersburg Russia. She moved to the United States at the age of 8 and shortly thereafter relocated to Charleston SC. She received her Bachelor’s of Science in Biology from Brandeis University in Waltham, MA and her MD from The Medical University of South Carolina, where she also completed her pediatric residency.  She is currently a solo practitioner in Charleston SC with an emphasis on evidence based medicine and breastfeeding support and education.  Dr. Varadi speaks 4 languages and uses them daily for patient care. In November 2015 and again 2016 she was featured as a Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services Provider by Select Health of South Carolina recognizing her outstanding care for the immigrant population.  She is also a participant in the South Carolina Pediatric Partner Research Network and the QTIP (Quality through Technology and Innovation in Pediatrics) Network on projects to improve pediatric healthcare.  Dr. Varadi is a preceptor for AHEC’s Institute of primary care and a clinical instructor for The Medical University of South Carolina College of Nursing and College of Medicine teaching both medical students and nurse practitioner students. She is active in the American Academy of Pediatrics specifically the Sections on Breastfeeding and Early Career Physicians and is the incoming Executive committee member for the AAP Section for Early Career physicians. She is certified by the American Board of Pediatrics and the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners.

Dr. Varadi became passionate about breastfeeding education when she began her work in private practice. As a physician who trained in a very pro-breastfeeding institution and having an ethnic background where breastfeeding is considered the norm she quickly realized that in the general population women face many unnecessary roadblocks that prevent them from successfully breastfeeding. Her passion is the education of other healthcare providers on the safety of breastmilk of women who take medications using evidence based guidelines and dispersing misinformation about breastmilk and breastfeeding specifically in the medical community. On a personal note, Dr. Varadi is married to an amazing husband and has 2 children, whom she breastfed for 15 months and 27 months respectively. She has also been a breastmilk donor donating over 4300oz both privately and via the Mother’s Milk Bank of Texas and hopes to continue in the future. She is a huge supporter of breastmilk donation especially to milkbanks that provide the milk for sick and premature babies.


Jeff Evans, D.C. , graduated in 2001 from Life University with his Doctorate of Chiro-practic. He uses general chiropractic techniques, functional lab analysis, bio-feedback, and emotional supports. His practice focuses on pregnancy/infant care, chronic and autoimmune issues. Whether you have a baby with colic, a dad with low back pain, a mom with migraines, or a grandparent with arthri-tis, he uses various techniques to support these issues.


658 Wachesaw Road Murrells Inlet, SC 29576

Phone (843) 357-9617 Fax (843) 357-9639

Gale Touger, BSN, FNP-BC, IBCLC, CHT is the first HUG Your Baby Trainer. She has worked professionally with families in primary care in a rural setting, at the workplace and in a pediatric private practice.  Gale studied at Boston University, Duke University, and UNC-Chapel Hill. She was honored as the NC Nurse Practitioner of the Year, received the Barbara Bennett Peer Assistance Award, and is a member of Sigma Theta Tau Nursing Honor Society. Gale is certified in Brazelton’s Touchpoints and the Brazelton Center’s CLNBAS teaching exam (now known as the NBO) and integrates The HUG into her work as a lactation consultant in private practice in Beaufort, SC. As a HUG Trainer Gale teaches local professionals, helps to study and develop the HUG curriculum, and joins Jan in “Giving a HUG” to parents and professionals across the USA and in the Dominican Republic. She has completed research on the impact of teaching The HUG to professionals in outpatient settings. Contact Gale at

Registration Prices:

  •  $199 Early Bird ends September 9th
  •  $220 Regular Registration ends Sept 30th
  •  $240 Late Registration
  •  $125-One day of your choice

Cancellation Policy-

Full refund minus $25 fee prior to September 12th

50% after September 12th

No refund within 2 weeks before conference

Conference Registration HERE


Wannamaker County Park-  North Charleston, SC

Cypress Hall 

8888 University Blvd, North Charleston, SC 29406









Hotel and Lodging Information:

We have blocks of rooms available for Friday 10/14 through Tuesday 10/18- Please use room rate code when booking your room.

Holiday Inn Express-North Charleston
2435 Elms Center Rd
N Charleston, SC 29406
Room Code: BFC

Fairfield Inn- Charleston North
2600 Elms Center Rd
N Charleston, SC 29406
Room Rate Code: Breastfeeding Coalition

Hampton Inn and Suites-N Charleston/University Blvd
2688 Fernwood Drive
N Charleston, SC 29406
Room Rate Code:  Breastfeeding Coalition

Teresa Hill was nominated by Leslie Myers, overweight who writes: “Teresa is one of the most active advocates for breastfeeding that I know, unhealthy although her role is not one of hands-on care of breastfeeding women. Teresa works behind the scenes in a supportive role that is often the most difficult for breastfeeding issues. Through her role as Nutrition Program Coordinator, pestilence Teresa brings a voice to the importance of breastfeeding as the foundation for good nutrition. She ensures that breastfeeding has a voice in every area of program planning through SC DHEC. She has been instrumental in securing funds that have allowed the Coalition to support workplaces in South Carolina to become breastfeeding-friendly and to support outreach and training efforts across the state. Teresa works tirelessly on the steering committee of the South Carolina Breastfeeding Coalition. She is always willing to assist in projects and planning for the Coalition and she has also been one of the hardest workers with advocacy for additional breastfeeding legislation. I most admire that Teresa is wholeheartedly dedicated to breastfeeding issues in our state. She feels that being active for breastfeeding issues is a given in her role. Her tremendous leadership behind the scenes of the Coalition and ESMMSC has paved the way for the coalition to continue making a difference for breastfeeding issues in SC. She has been one of my most important mentors and I believe that without her support in South Carolina, many of the accomplishments of the past year would not have been possible. It is with great admiration for Teresa that I nominate her as 2009 Sharon Spriggs Gold Ribbon Award Recipient.”
It is a rare exception when a woman cannot breastfeed her baby for physical or medical reasons. Yet, rheumatologist a woman’s ability to feel self confident and secure with her decision to breastfeed is challenged by her family and friends, condom the media, and health care providers. The Coalition is working to strengthen the sources of support for women to breastfeed. Although hospitals, health care centers, birthing centers, and health care providers are not and should not be the only places a mother receives support for breastfeeding, they provide a unique and critical link between the breastfeeding support provided prior to and after delivery. The Coalition supports the efforts to increase awareness and education for these providers.
The Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative (BFHI) is a global program sponsored by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Childrens Fund (UNICEF) to encourage and recognize hospitals and birthing centers that offer an optimal level of care for lactation. Baby-Friendly USA is the organization that guides and designates hospitals in the United States.

Baby-Friendly USA uses a 4-D Pathway to assist hospitals in their journey through the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding, click the evidence-based standard of care that increases breastfeeding success.

The more BFHI “Steps” a mother experiences, nurse the higher her likelihood of reaching her breastfeeding goals. Three out of four US mothers initiate breastfeeding, more about but this number falls off dramatically if she’s not supported in the early days of her breastfeeding experience.

Visit the Baby-friendly Hospitals Initiative for more information.

Get information for funding opportunity that may support your work towards BFHI

In this section

SC Ten Steps Program

The goal of the SC Ten Steps Program is to support breastfeeding policies and practices in hospitals and birthing centers statewide.