Model Communities Grantee

Northwest Community Hospital

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Grantee Summary

Opened in 1959, Northwest Community Hospital (NCH) is an independent, non-profit hospital with its main campus in Arlington Heights, Illinois. NCH serves the communities of Arlington Heights, Mt. Prospect, Rolling Meadows, Palatine, Buffalo Grove, Wheeling, Schaumburg, Hoffman Estates and Barrington. The hospital’s mission is to provide high quality, compassionate healthcare to the people of the northwest suburban region. Through its inpatient facilities, outpatient services and immediate care centers, the organization sees 400,000 patients annually, including providing more than 75,000 emergency department visits. Additionally, every year, Northwest Community Hospital delivers at least 3,300 newborns.

Policy, Systems and Environmental Changes

NCH is utilizing funding from the Model Communities program to make changes in their hospital polices that support and promote a breastfeeding-friendly environment for new moms. These include the following PSEs:

  • Implementation and adoption of 8 out of 10 Baby Friendly Steps, per the Baby Friendly USA designation; and
  • Integration of breastfeeding educational and support services into the community through training of Latino community leaders.

Highlights and Successes

  • For the first time ever, NCH added a page for Lactation Services and Breastfeeding Support on their website; This page helps communicate the efforts of breastfeeding internally with hospital leaders and provides valuable information and resources to prospective mothers in the community.
  • NCH has already put in place 7 Baby Friendly Steps and plans to complete the 8th step by February 2012.

Sustainability of PSE Changes

  • NCH has a strong multi-disciplinary task force in place to address breastfeeding policies within the hospital and amongst the hospital staff, which will facilitate movement on the additional Baby Friendly policies and assure accountability.
  • NCH has already integrated and hired 6 new Breastfeeding Peer Counselors as hospital staff, all of which have completed a 6-week training to promote breastfeeding in the community and in the hospital.

Contact Information

Northwest Community Hospital
Northwest Community Hospital Foundation

3060 W. Salt Creek Ln., Arlington Heights, IL 60005
Contact: Karen Baker
Phone: 847-618-4267
Technical Assistance Partner: HealthConnect One, Illinois Chapter, American Academy of Pediatrics