In today's healthcare market, providing quality care while containing costs is essential to staying competitive. Implementing the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding is a cost neutral way to greatly increase the quality of maternity services for all new families. The Star Achiever Program addresses all six Aims of Improvement first laid out in the Institute of Medicine's groundbreaking 2001 report, Crossing the Quality Chasm: A New Health System for
the 21st Century.
Facilities can improve the safety and stability of all neonates regardless of chosen infant feeding method through evidence-based practices demonstrated to reduce risk for infection, hypothermia, hypoglycemia, jaundice and hyponatremic dehydration. In addition, the Ten Steps promote optimal nutritional outcomes for the newborn, and optimal short- and long-term health outcomes for babies and their mothers.
Star Achiever promotes integration of universally recognized evidence-based practices for maternity care. When old practices are replaced with the Ten Steps, hospitals are well positioned to improve scores on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Maternity Care Practices in Infant Nutrition and Care survey and increase their ability to address the Joint Commission's performance measure for exclusive breast milk feeding. And with best practice innovation in place, Star Achiever facilities have an advantage in recruitment and retention.
Star Achiever places families at the center of care, promotes informed decision-making, facilitates achievement of patients' infant feeding goals and results in higher customer satisfaction rates.
By increasing capacity and continuity of support, implementation of the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding results in reduced delays for families when accessing the help they need for optimal infant care.
A 2009 cost analysis prepared for the Texas Department of State Health Services concluded that overall expenditures for implementing the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding are nominal and reduced each year. Meanwhile, savings in space, time, supplies, capital and improved health outcomes continue to increase.
By implementing the Ten Steps, hospitals can significantly reduce racial and ethnic disparities in health outcomes.