FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 27, 2006 Contact: Victoria Tedeschi Public Relations Specialist
Adventist Midwest Health
ALMH encourages ‘High-Tech, High-Touch’ approach
La Grange, IL – Even with all the latest technology, there is nothing more meaningful to a new baby than the touch of his parents. This is why Adventist La Grange Memorial Hospital practices a philosophy of “High Tech, High Touch.”
Through the program, mothers are encouraged to breast feed, and fathers are encouraged to spend time bonding with their baby. “We have so much technology here with computerized monitors, but we don’t want to get away from the touch. For baby, that initial touch of skin on skin is such a bonding experience,” said Janice Gries-Griffin, program coordinator.
The program includes backrubs for new mothers, a father’s rocking program and a post-partum discussion group. Called “Spa for Mom,” new mothers are treated to a back massage combined with scented aromatherapy oils during their stay. “We spend 10 minutes with mom to help her relax,” Gries-Griffin said.
During the baby’s stay at the hospital, staff recommend to fathers that they wear a soft, button-down shirt during his visits. While holding baby, fathers can tuck baby close to their chest so the baby can better hear his heartbeat. “This gives mom a break and also lets dad bond with the baby,” she said. “Dads can do this when they come home at the end of the day.”
Finally, there is “Surviving Motherhood,” a monthly program offered for new mothers. Part baby basics class, part support group, “Surviving Motherhood” offers information for women on post-partum topics. It is particularly targeted at mothers who may not have built-in support groups.
In previous eras, many mothers had built-in support systems with neighbors or friends who had just had babies. With today’s fast-paced lifestyles, these support systems may not be as readily available. “Many of today’s mothers may be the only new mother in the neighborhood or she may be working out of the home,” Gries-Griffin said. “She can come here and talk about her concerns as it relates to baby.”