There are certain things every family should be made aware of when bringing home the new baby. One such thing is a serious infant risk that has been at the height of attention over the past two decades, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). The cause of SIDS remains a mystery, but nonetheless, it has stayed in the spotlight of researchers.
Our very own nurses at The Birthplace have been one of the many groups researching and educating communities on how to reduce the risk for SIDS. In 2009, four infant deaths documented within Lycoming County raised awareness of our staff nurses. To ensure that enough was being done to prevent SIDS, they came up with a three-step intervention:
1. Improve Nursing Education
2. Improve Parent Education
- Nurses require parents to view a Safe Sleep Video and sign a Safe Sleep Contract before leaving the hospital
- Safe Sleep posters are hung and door hangers placed in every patient room
- Safe Sleep brochures are given out to family
- Sleep sacks are handed out to new mothers as a method to reduce smothering of newborns with use of traditional blankets
- Safe Sleep education is provided during our childbirth classes.
3. Improve Community Outreach
- SIDS education billboard was created
- Grandparent education is offered
- Cribs are distributed to needy families through Lycoming County's Cribs for Kids program
- Safe Sleep presentations were given at the Community Health Fair at the Lycoming Mall
- A news segment was aired on WNEP-TV highlighting Safe Sleep environments and parent education at The Birthplace
Reduce the Risk for SIDS
Follow the ABCs of Safe Sleep:
- Alone- never share a bed or sleep with a baby or put anything in the crib with the baby
- on their Back- place infants on their back for sleep time
- in their Crib- baby should never sleep on a bed, couch or the floor. Always place them in a crib
Learn more about SIDS and what you can do to reduce the risk.