Ascension Saint Thomas Midtown Hospital and Ascension Saint Thomas Rutherford Hospital, both part of Ascension Tennessee, were among 18 birthing hospitals recognized with the BEST for Babies Award for their efforts to reduce infant deaths in Tennessee. The award is given by the Tennessee Department of Health (TDH) and the Tennessee Hospital Association (THA).

The BEST Award stands for breastfeeding, early elective delivery reduction, and safe sleep for Tennessee babies. TDH has partnered with Tennessee birthing hospitals since 2014 to promote safe sleep for infants and help give Tennessee babies a great start to life.

“Tennessee’s babies are our most precious resource, and we’re thrilled to recognize these hospitals for their important efforts in protecting and improving infant health,” said Tennessee Health Commissioner Lisa Piercey, MD, MBA, FAAP. “These awards demonstrate that together as partners we can save lives, and we’re excited to continue our collaboration with THA and hospitals across Tennessee striving to be the BEST places for babies to be born.”

“The BEST award recognizes birthing hospitals for their dedication, hard work and success across multiple areas to improve the health of Tennessee mothers and their babies,” said Tennessee Hospital Association President and CEO Wendy Long, MD. “The criteria are challenging and we encourage all birthing hospitals to continue to strive to meet these standards to be designated as BEST for babies.”