Meet your baby’s first friend

Meet your baby’s first friend

At Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn, Ill., your baby’s first friend, or BFF, is one of our trained nurses who puts the focus on you and your baby throughout your entire birthing experience.

“We listened to our patients and their needs and designed this program so that they and their babies can get the best care possible,” says Geanette Barry, a registered nurse and BFF at Christ Medical Center. “This program focuses on helping mothers immediately bond with their babies through uninterrupted skin-to-skin care for both vaginal and cesarean births.”

Here’s what a baby’s first friend does:

  • Meets with you and your family during labor or the pre-op period to explain the plan of care for your baby as soon as he/she is born
  • Stays in the room throughout the birth and cares for the newborn after delivery
  • Assists with skin-to-skin care and breastfeeding to promote early bonding
  • Performs a head-to-toe assessment and completes newborn procedures such as weight/length measurements and medications, if needed
  • Communicates and collaborates with newborn’s care team to promote safety and provide individualized care

Outside of the above responsibilities, Barry says our team of trained BFFs can help moms by answering their questions and educating them on how to best care for their babies.

“By protecting the first hour of life after birth with skin-to-skin care and breastfeeding support, BFFs reduce the negative effects of separation for both mom and baby and enhance the immediate newborn transition period in terms of respiratory, temperature and glucose stabilization. As a result, this can help enhance confidence in women, increase mother-baby bonding and improve overall satisfaction of the families birthing experience.”

“I always say I have the best job in the world,” says Barry. “To witness and be able to be a part of the birthing of a newborn but also the birthing of a new family is an amazing experience. The long-term consequences of providing skin-to-skin contact and supporting breastfeeding gives babies a healthier start to life. Mothers are given the opportunity to have an experience that gives them confidence, and the families experience positive memories that will last a lifetime. To impact a family’s experience in such a way is an honor and a blessing to me.”

To find out more about baby’s first friend, click here.

If you are expecting soon or planning to have a baby, you may also want to check out Advocate Christ’s brand new birthing center with private birthing suites. You can take a virtual tour here.

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One Comment

  1. This looks like a great program! I’d like to know if Christ is looking into expanding prenatal care to include midwives? I had a midwife at Masonic during my pregnancy, and absolutely loved the care I received. I think it would be great if Christ started a program too, for Mom’s Best Friend during pregnancy!

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About the Author

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Jamie Bonnema

Jamie Bonnema, health enews contributor, is a specialist of public affairs and marketing at Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn. She earned her BA in communications from DePaul University in Chicago. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, going to concerts, and cheering on the Chicago Cubs.

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