Published on April 07, 2017

Firelands Regional Medical Center Recognized by Ohio First Steps for Healthy Babies, OBA & OLCA

April 7, 2017 – Sandusky, Ohio -- Firelands Regional Medical Center, along with other maternity centers in Ohio, is taking steps to promote its support of successful breastfeeding. The Ohio First Steps for Healthy Babies is a voluntary breastfeeding designation program through the Ohio Hospital Association and Ohio Department of Health that recognizes maternity centers in Ohio for taking steps to promote, protect, and support breastfeeding in their organization.

In partnership with the Ohio Breastfeeding Alliance and the Ohio Lactation Consultants Association, the Ohio First Steps program is recognizing facilities with the “Maternity Care Best Practice Award” for 2016. This recognition indicates a facility’s commitment to best practices by choosing to not distribute infant formula or formula company-sponsored sample packs.

In addition to this commitment, Firelands Regional Medical Center is providing information and hospital practices supportive of breastfeeding and the Ohio First Steps for Healthy Babies program. Firelands provides lactation consultants, who are available to assist patients with all aspects of the breastfeeding process. A consultant visits with new mothers during their hospital stay, and they are available to patients both prenatally and after returning home. Community members are also encouraged to call 419-557-7596 for any breastfeeding questions.

“It is our hope that Ohio First Steps for Healthy Babies will prompt our leaders and employees to have thoughtful conversations in the hospitals about the benefits of breastfeeding in order to educate patients and the community,” said Linda Ricci, director of women’s and children’s services at Firelands. “The support a new mother receives from hospital employees and leaders can impact her decision to breastfeed. Increasing the number of breastfed newborns can lead to a decrease in the likelihood for future health conditions for the child such as asthma, diabetes and obesity.”

For more information about the women and children’s services offered at Firelands, visit

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