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Baby Hugging Program at Victoria General Hospital Gets Some Love

April 5, 2018


Victoria – Today marks the first anniversary of the launch of Island Health’s Huggies® No Baby Unhugged® program at Victoria General Hospital (VGH). Over the past year, the volunteer hugging program has seen tremendous success ensuring all babies, especially those in the neonatal or pediatric intensive care unit, receive physical human interaction should circumstance prevent a parent from being at their newborn’s side.


Since the launch of the program, the health and development of dozens of vulnerable babies at VGH have benefited from this additional human touch. This would not have been possible without the kind volunteers who have hugged, rocked, cradled and even sang to the newborns, giving them the human interaction and support they need to thrive.

After successfully launching the program at VGH and seeing the positive impact in patient care, Island Health again partnered with Huggies® to bring the program to Nanaimo Regional General Hospital (NRGH) this past January. The program at VGH has also expanded to another unit and is providing even more hugs.

“The importance of a hug is so profound and the No Baby Unhugged® program helps the babies who need hugs most,” says Island Health President and CEO Kathy MacNeil. “The first year of our hugging program at Victoria General Hospital has been a major success, and we are thankful the program has since expanded to help babies in Nanaimo – thank you to all the volunteers and staff for taking the time to improve families’ lives.”

An exciting new partnership with Huggies®, London Drugs and Island Health began in January to make sure that no baby goes unhugged. With every Huggies® Diaper purchase made by an LDExtras member between January 26 and April 30, 2018, a $2 donation will be made to the Huggies® No Baby Unhugged® program at Victoria General Hospital.

Donations collected from this campaign will be used to expand the Huggies® No Baby Unhugged® program at VGH. The donations will come from London Drugs and Huggies®, through the Victoria Hospitals Foundation to the program.


About Island Health
Island Health, one of seven health jurisdictions in British Columbia, provides health care and support services to more than 765,000 people on Vancouver Island, the islands in the Salish Sea and the Johnstone Strait, and mainland communities north of Powell River.

With more than 20,000 staff, 1,900 physician partners, 6,000 volunteers, and the dedicated support of foundations and auxiliaries, Island Health delivers a broad range of health services, including: public health services, primary health care, home and community care, mental health and addictions services, acute care in hospitals, and much more across a huge, geographically diverse region.

About Huggies 
Huggies® believes deeply in the Power of Hugs. That's why every Huggies® diaper and wipe is inspired by parents' hugs. For nearly 40 years, Huggies® has been helping parents provide love, care and reassurance to help babies thrive. No Baby Unhugged® is Huggies® promise to ensure babies get the care they need to thrive, including innovative everyday products, growing hospital hugger programs, specially-designed products for the smallest of babies, and on-going clinical research and resources. Huggies® is the #1 diaper brand in Canadian hospitals and partners with NICU nurses to develop diapers and wipes that meet the specific needs of pre-term infants. For more information on Huggies® No Baby Unhugged® program visit www.nobabyunhugged.ca

About London Drugs 
Founded in 1945, B.C.-based London Drugs has 80 stores in more than 35 major markets throughout British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba including its online store www.londondrugs.com London Drugs offers consumers a range of products from digital cameras and cosmetics to computers and televisions. Renowned for its creative approach to retailing, the company employs more than 7,500 people with pharmacy and health care services being the heart of its business. Committed to innovation and superior customer service, London Drugs has established itself as a reputable and caring company and continues to position itself for future growth and development.

About the Victoria Hospitals Foundation 
The Victoria Hospitals Foundation works in partnership with Island Health to enable donations to Vancouver Island’s two largest and most comprehensive hospitals: the Royal Jubilee and the Victoria General. Last year, we raised more than $7 million for urgently needed medical equipment and special projects that help these two hospitals provide care to all 767,000 residents of Vancouver Island. Since 1989, the Victoria Hospitals Foundation has raised more than $128 million to benefit our hospitals. For more information, call the Foundation at 250-519-1750 or visit www.victoriahf.ca.

Huggies® media inquiries:
Laura Patton
416.640.4152
patton@veritasinc.com

Island Health media inquiries:
Meribeth Burton
250.519.1815
Meribeth.burton@viha.ca

London Drugs media inquiries:
Angela Joyce
403.681.9286
aj@whiterabbitcommunications.com

Victoria Hospitals Foundation media inquiries:
Gaëlle van Erp
778.678.6248
gaelle.vanerp@viha.ca