Tahlequah Daily Press

Local News

February 5, 2014

Hospital joins 'Ban the Bag'

TAHLEQUAH — W.W. Hastings Hospital has joined the “Ban the Bag” initiative and agreed to discontinue the practice of sending new mothers home with commercial formula discharge bags.

The Oklahoma State Department of Health and Maternal and Child Health Service announced Tuesday that Hastings and six other hospitals will  be taking part, in an effort to encourage breastfeeding of newborns. With 28 institutions now in the program, half of Oklahoma’s hospitals are participating.

“W.W. Hastings Hospital has begun the process of obtaining a ‘Baby-Friendly’ designation, and as part of our commitment to encourage improved health by breastfeeding, we are implementing the ‘Ban the Bag’ initiative,” said Brian Hail, Hastings CEO. “By not promoting infant formula in bags of free formula to new mothers, we know we are helping assure the success of our patients’ breastfeeding efforts at home. As an alternative, we are providing our patients with a diaper bag containing the same kinds of items typically included by the formula companies so that we continue to meet our patients’ expectations.”

Rhode Island and Massachusetts hospitals voluntarily banned gift bags with formula in 2011 and 2012, respectively, and some U.S. cities are “bag free.”

“Ban the Bag” is a nationwide effort to increase breastfeeding rates by ending hospital promotion of brand name formulas, which studies indicate reduces breastfeeding rates. Mothers who encounter problems while breastfeeding are more likely to use formula supplied by hospitals than to seek assistance.

The OSDH reports that several Oklahoma hospitals encourage breastfeeding through other measures, like staff training and maximizing contact between mothers and infants, which includes rooming newborns with their mothers.

Such measures are credited for increasing Oklahoma’s breastfeeding rates in four of five categories tracked in the Breastfeeding Report Card released annually by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The 2013 study, reporting on babies born in 2010, show that Oklahoma improved from 41st to 25th in exclusive breastfeeding at 3 months of age, and from 45th to 24th at 6 months. Oklahoma also improved in breastfeeding initiation from 39th to 31st and in any breastfeeding at 6 months from 43rd to 38th.

“We are moving in the right direction,” said Dr. Edd Rhoades, interim director of the OSDH Maternal and Child Health Service, in a press release. “It has taken a desire to improve outcomes and a focused effort at multiple levels. The fact that Oklahoma has its first ‘Baby-Friendly’ hospital, Claremore Indian Hospital, and that many other hospitals are working to achieve this designation, reflects the recognition that breastfeeding is an important factor in our state’s health.”

Carrie Rigsby, registered nurse at Hastings, said the hospital wants to earn a ‘Baby Friendly’ designation from the OSDH.

“It is awarded to hospitals that provide an optimal level of care and encourage breastfeeding practices,” Rigsby said. “‘Ban the Bag’ is part of the process. Our facility initiated this approximately one year ago and the response has been well-received. Our patients are getting free bags, infant onesies and a water bottle, and these are branded with a new logo.”

Rigsby added that physicians and nurses are receiving extensive up-to-date training concerning breastfeeding.

“Our dedicated professional staff is committed to supporting families throughout the birth process, with education beginning in the prenatal phase and carried on through delivery and beyond,” she said. “Our goal is to increase breastfeeding rates and better prepare families when they go home with their new baby.”

Breastfeeding is one of several steps the OSDH encourages to reduce infant mortality. Others include smoking cessation, early prenatal care, carrying full-term, safe sleep spaces for babies, correct installation of child safety seats, recognizing and getting assistance for postpartum depression, and never shaking a baby.

“Oklahoma hospitals are working to provide quality care to families and joining the ‘Ban the Bag’ project is a step that sends a strong message to everyone,” Becky Mannel, project leader for the Oklahoma Hospital Breastfeeding Education Project, said in the release. “We hope more hospitals will join this effort until Oklahoma is a ‘bag-free’ state.”

The project is sponsored by the OSDH under the “Preparing for a Lifetime, It’s Everyone’s Responsibility” initiative to minimize infant deaths in Oklahoma.

srowley@tahlequahdailypress.com

1
Text Only
Local News
  • ts-Trail-show-1.jpg Jackson takes prize

    Cherokee Heritage Center Museum Curator Mickel Yantz kicked off his 10th anniversary at the venue with the opening of the 43rd annual Trail of Tears Art Show this past Friday.
    “The Trail of Tears show was my first exhibit opening when I arrived 10 years ago,” said Yantz. “Since that time, the show has changed so dramatically; we’ve added so many new artists, and the art work has excelled over time. It’s like Christmas for me.”
    Yantz said he was exceptionally pleased with the opening reception.
    “We had a fantastic turnout,” said Yantz. “We had a lot of fun and sold some artwork, which is great for opening night.”
    The exhibit is on display at the Cherokee Heritage Center through May 26. This year’s show features 130 pieces of art spanning eight different categories, including basketry, graphics, jewelry, miniature, painting, pottery and sculpture.

    April 16, 2014 2 Photos

  • churchguy.jpg Some NSU students find Church of Monett offensive

    They turn heads every time they show up on campus, and some students at Northeastern State University are offended by their presence.
    The Church of Monett, Mo., has made periodic trips to Tahlequah to stage quiet demonstrations in public campus spaces in recent years. They carry signs that read, “Wives, Obey your Husbands,”; “To be Married to the divorced is Adultery”; and “Don’t be deceived: fornicators homosexuals idolaters adulterers thieves drunkards - shall not inherit God’s Kingdom.”

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Teen sent to hospital after being struck by tractor-trailer

    An 18-year-old Tahlequah man was struck by a tractor-trailer early Tuesday morning on the State Highway 51 bypass near Mimosa Lane.
    Tahlequah Police Capt. Tom Jones said officers responded to the scene at about 5:40 a.m., when Sage Sohns was found injured and lying in the road. A medical helicopter responded to the scene to transport Sohns to a Tulsa hospital, where he was being treated for a closed-head injury, police said.

    April 16, 2014

  • TPS board hears architect presentations for cafeteria

    Members of the Tahlequah Public Schools Board of Education heard from four architectural firms seeking a contract for construction at Cherokee Elementary School.
    TPS plans to build a cafeteria-auditorium and a music room with a stage, which may also serve as a safe room during storms.

    April 16, 2014

  • Briggs.jpg Local man hit with assault, burglary charges

    Prosecutors have formally charged a Tahlequah man accused of breaking into a motel room, tying a rope around a man’s neck and stabbing him repeatedly with a syringe.
    Jimmy Dale Briggs Jr., 33, is charged with first-degree burglary, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, and two counts of threatening to perform an act of violence.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Boy whose mom scolded deputies in trouble again

    Cherokee County sheriff’s deputies arrested a 15-year-old theft suspect Monday night after he allegedly assaulted his brother.
    Deputy Kim Novak said authorities were dispatched to a home and ultimately took the teen into custody. While there, they also discovered items that had been reported stolen, including a bed and several tools.
    Novak said the teen is the same boy who has previously been found to be in possession of stolen items.

    April 16, 2014

  • plane-crash-1-a.jpg Plane crash victims recovering

    Two Arkansas men remained in a Tulsa hospital Monday after the plane they were flying crashed into a wooded area in Cookson.
    According to the Federal Aviation Administration, the 1946 Ercoupe 415 crashed under “unknown circumstances” about a mile from the Tenkiller Air Park in Cookson Saturday morning.
    The Oklahoma Highway Patrol says 75-year-old John McCreary and 85-year-old Albert Demarco Jr., both of Ozark, Ark., were flown from Cookson to St. John Medical Center in Tulsa.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • walker-terrance.jpg Man taken for blood sample confuses hospital with hotel

    Tahlequah police say an Austin, Texas, man stopped Saturday mistook a local hospital for a hotel when he was taken to have his blood drawn.
    Officer Cory Keele’s affidavit says 20-year-old Terrance Walker was driving south on Muskogee Avenue at about 2 a.m. Saturday, swerving from one line to another.
    Keele tried to stop the car near Muskogee and Chickasaw, and Walker eventually slowed to a stop near South Street.
    Walker opened the car door as Keele approached. The officer said Walker had dilated pupils.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • ennis-scottie.jpg Knife-cutting incident lands man in jail

    A Tahlequah man jailed for allegedly cutting a woman with a kitchen knife was released on a recognizance bond Monday.
    Scottie Lee Ennis, 42, was arrested after Officer Austin Yates was sent to Tahlequah City Hospital late Friday night.
    There, Yates spoke with Jennifer Pennell, who had apparently suffered a stab wound to her arm.
    Pennell told Yates she and her husband, Ennis, had gone to Dewain’s Place earlier in the evening, and while at the bar, a man bought her a drink.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • hawley-jeremy.jpg Tahlequah man bonds out after arrest for assault

    A 22-year-old Tahlequah man bonded out of jail Monday after his weekend arrest on domestic assault charges.
    Jeremy Hawley was booked into jail Sunday for domestic assault and battery in the presence of a minor and interfering with a 911 call.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

Poll

What to you think of a state Legislature proposal to forbid cities from raising the minimum wage? Choose the closest to your opinion.

The federal government should set the minimum wage across the board.
States should be allowed to raise their minimum wages, but not cities.
Both states and cities should be allowed to raise their minimum wages.
Cities should be allowed to raise their mimum wages, but not states.
There should be no minimum wage at all.
Undecided.
     View Results
Tahlequah Daily Press Twitter
Follow us on twitter
AP Video
Stocks