China: Barbara Hotelling Takes HUG Your Baby to China



This post was written by Barbara Hotelling, MSN, IBCLC, CHT, a HUG Your Baby trainer, Duke University clinical instructor, and past President of Lamaze International and DONA International.

It was my privilege and honor to be invited to bring HUG Your Baby to the 3rd anniversary celebration of AIMA Maternity Hospital in Hangzhou, China. Vivien Li was my hostess and  translator as we traveled from Hangzhou to Wenzhou and Taizhou to make presentations to professionals and parents at three maternity hospitals.



Tours of the three hospitals were so interesting. Parents take birth classes and get prenatal, birth, postpartum, and breastfeeding care at the maternity hospitals. The nurses serve as doulas and are trained in Brazelton’s sleep/wake states and how to calm a fussy baby so they can educate parents as they care for them. Parents may stay in the postpartum care center for a week or two and receive help with breastfeeding and parenting questions. After birth in the hospital and discharge from the hospital, babies can enjoy the baby spa, where they get a swim in the tub followed by infant massage.

Support from family and friends is huge in these three Chinese cities. New parents rarely suffer from depression as their needs are met, allowing them to be present with their newborns. 

Professionals – nurses, lactation consultants, and physicians – attended a full day of HUG Your Baby training in Hangzhou. At times we have mothers with their newborns attend the HUG classes for professionals as a way to demonstrate a baby’s behavior and use of the HUG Strategies. 


However, since no mothers were available for this particular class, my life-like baby doll, Audree, was used to demonstrate HUG techniques forcalming a fussy baby and showing parents the amazing talents of the newborn. Parents later came to a special parent session, where their babies demonstrated various newborn Zones, feeding cues, engagement/disengagement cues, and how well they recognized and responded totheir own parents’ voices (compared to mine).

In Wenzhou and Taizhou, professionals attended an introduction to The HUG and parents attended information sessions where they learned HUG information to use with their infants.

Enthusiasm for HUG Your Baby information warmed my heart, and Chinese travel and hospitality warmed my soul. 

Click here to read about bringing HUG Your Baby to other countries around the world.
Click here to see professional evaluations of HUG Your baby workshops.