Baby-Friendly Initiative

In Canada, the BFI (globally referred to as BFHI) is overseen by the Breastfeeding Committee for Canada.

The BFI (globally called BFHI) is a global program initiated in 1991 by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in response to the Innocenti Declaration (1990). This program encourages and recognizes hospitals and maternity facilities that offer an optimal level of care for mothers and infants. A Baby-Friendly hospital/maternity facility focuses on the needs of the newborns and empowers mothers and families to give their infant the best possible start in life. In practical terms, a Baby-Friendly hospital/maternity facility encourages and helps women to successfully initiate and continue to breastfeed their babies, and will receive special recognition for having done so. Since the inception of the program, more than 15,000 hospitals worldwide have received the Baby–Friendly designation. In Canada, every health facility must follow the BCC document BCC BFI Integrated 10 Steps Practice Outcome Indicators for Hospitals and Community Health Services: Summary and meet the outcome practice indicators in the Breastfeeding Committee for Canada’s document BFI Practice Outcomes Indicators for Hospitals and Community Health Services and adhere to the International Code of Marketing of Breast-Milk Substitutes (1981).

For information about the Baby-Friendly Initiative, see the following key documents or go to the Breastfeeding for Canada Website.

Baby-Friendly Status Report for Canada (2014)

Who Benefits from BFI

Business Case for the Baby-Friendly Initiative