Feeding your baby

Maternity: after your baby is born

We are accredited as baby friendly by Unicef. This is a nationally recognised mark of quality for the support we provide with:

  • feeding your baby

  • developing a close and loving relationship with your baby

This includes a commitment to the international code on the marketing of breast milk substitutes.

We do not display or distribute any materials produced by the manufacturers of breast milk substitutes, bottles, teats or dummies.

Feeding your newborn in hospital

Breastfeeding in hospital

We encourage you to breastfeed your baby as this is the healthiest choice for your baby and you. Breastfeeding reduces the chance of your baby developing:

  • tummy upsets
  • chest, urinary and ear infections
  • allergies
  • diabetes
  • obesity
  • sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS)

Mothers who breastfeed have reduced rates of breast and ovarian cancer and osteoporosis in later life.

Your midwife will be able to support you in learning to feed your baby.

You can read information and advice about how to breastfeed on the NHS website.

Our infant feeding team is available on the postnatal ward from Monday to Friday. They can help if you’re finding feeding more challenging. Your midwife will refer you to them.

We can:

  • develop feeding care plans with you
  • refer to your local community support for when you go home
  • help with feeding difficulties caused by cleft lip and palate, or breast surgery

Formula feeding in hospital

We'll support you if you choose to formula feed.

We provide formula at the hospital. We recommend that you don’t bring in your own.

If you do bring in formula, please make sure it is ready-made milk as we do not have facilities for making up bottles from powdered milk.

Storage time for formula milk in hospital is less than at home due to the multiple use of the fridge. A lot of your formula might be thrown away. Small bottles of formula will be less wasteful.

You can read bottle feeding advice on the NHS website.

Hand expressing

We may have asked you to hand express some milk before the birth of your baby.

Our health information about expressing your breastmilk has more guidance about how to do this and the benefits.

You can email [email protected] if you have any questions.

Support with feeding after you leave hospital

If you live in Lambeth and Southwark, we run a breast feeding drop-in group every day except Wednesdays. These are held in different parts of the boroughs.

Please email [email protected] for more information.

You can find more feeding support in your local area from:

Feeding support resources

Donor milk bank

Our donor milk bank provides safe, screened milk to our Evelina London neonatal unit and other hospitals in the south east.

Find out more about becoming a milk bank donor.

Do you have any comments or concerns about your care?

Contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS)

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