New public-private partnership targets infant safety

DES MOINES | A new public-private partnership between the Iowa Department of Public Health and Meridian Health Plan of Iowa is targeting four Iowa counties, including Black Hawk, in the first multi-county Cribs for Kids program.

Women delivering babies at participating hospitals within the pilot counties will receive a free crib, if needed.IowaDPH

Funding from the Maternal Infant Early Childhood Home Visitation program at IDPH with supplemental funds from Meridian Health Plan will assure parents who deliver an infant at hospitals in participating counties will receive a crib free of charge.

The participating counties are Hamilton (Hamilton County Public Hospital), Black Hawk (Covenant and Allan), Des Moines (Great River Medical Center), and Clinton (Mercy Medical Center-Clinton).

“Nationally, detailed data on sleep-related infant deaths reveals significant concerns about safe sleep practices,” said Methan Harris, Meridian Health Plan vice president. “More than half of infants that died of a sleep-related cause were bed-sharing at time of death.”

Sleep-related infant deaths are also an issue in Iowa. Such deaths include those due to SIDS, asphyxia or suffocation, or undetermined/unknown cause. An average of one death out of every 1,000 births in Iowa is attributed to a sleep-related cause. It is clear safe sleeping can save infant lives and safe cribs are an important part of a safe sleep environment.

The pilot project extends one year and success will be measured by assessing prevalence of safe sleep environments in intervention counties.

Link to original article:


BED SHARING Remains Greatest Risk Factor for Sleep Related Infant Deaths



Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) and other sleep-related causes of infant mortality have several known risk factors, but little is known if these factors change for different age groups. In a new study in the August 2014 Pediatrics, “Sleep Environment Risks for Younger and Older Infants,” published online July 14, researchers studied sleep-related infant deaths from 24 states from 2004-2012 in the case reporting system of the National Center for the Review and Prevention of Child Deaths. Cases were divided by younger (0-3 months) and older (4 months to one year) infants. In a total of 8,207 deaths analyzed, majority of the infants (69 percent) were bed-sharing at the time of death. Fifty-eight percent were male, and most deaths occurred in non-Hispanic whites. Younger infants were more likely bed-sharing (73.8 percent vs. 58.9 percent), sleeping on an adult bed or on/near a person, while older infants were more likely found prone with objects, such as blankets or stuffed animals in the sleep area. Researchers conclude that sleep-related infant deaths risk factors are different for younger and older infants. Parents should follow the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommendations for a safe sleep environment and understand that different factors reflect risk at different developmental stages.

The American Academy of Pediatrics is an organization of 62,000 primary care pediatricians, pediatric medical subspecialists and pediatric surgical specialists dedicated to the health, safety and well-being of infants, children, adolescents and young adults. For more information, visit

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New SIDS Registry Tracks Clues to Infant Deaths

By Linda Carroll
First published June 8th 2014, 9:34 am

A death registry for infants may help researchers get a better handle on how many babies die each year from SIDS and other causes, a new government study suggests.

Sudden unexpected infant death (SUID) accounts for one in three deaths in children aged 1 month to 1 year, explained the study’s lead author, Carrie Shapiro-Mendoza, a senior scientist in the division of reproductive health at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“It’s the leading cause of death in infants of this age,” she said.

Shapiro-Mendoza and her colleagues developed a new classification system to help medical examiners and coroners provide a more accurate description of the circumstances of each infant death.

“Right now there’s a lot of confusion, or lack of standard practice, among medical examiners and coroners when they’re deciding whether to call it SIDS or suffocation,” Shapiro-Mendoza said.

The hope is the new system will give a clearer picture of infant deaths. And that, Shapiro-Mendoza said, might help researchers learn more about the causes of these SUIDs, and perhaps come up with ways to prevent future deaths.

Once researchers have a better handle on how many deaths can be explained, they can start to look for reasons for the unexplained deaths. “Maybe we need to look at biological or medical factors,” Shapiro-Mendoza said.

Currently, SIDS is a “garbage diagnosis” that is used when the cause of death is unknown, said Dr. Marlyn Woo, a professor of pediatric pulmonology at the Mattel Children’s Hospital, UCLA. “With all these cases being labeled as SIDS, you can’t really home in on the cause of this epidemic. And you can’t learn how to identify those children who are at risk and find measures to prevent it.”

The new research will go a long way to helping scientists to find answers, Woo said.

“Thank goodness the federal government got involved and funded this classification system,” she added.

Link to Original Article:

SIDS deaths points to lack of oxygen

New insight into SIDS deaths points to lack of oxygen


Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Research at the University of Adelaide has shed new light onto the possible causes of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), which could help to prevent future loss of children’s lives.

In a world-first study, researchers in the University’s School of Medical Sciences have found that telltale signs in the brains of babies that have died of SIDS are remarkably similar to those of children who died of accidental asphyxiation.

“This is a very important result. It helps to show that asphyxia rather than infection or trauma is more likely to be involved in SIDS deaths,” says the leader of the project, Professor Roger Byard AO, Marks Professor of Pathology at the University of Adelaide and Senior Specialist Forensic Pathologist with Forensic Science SA.

The study compared 176 children who died from head trauma, infection, drowning, asphyxia and SIDS.

Researchers were looking at the presence and distribution of a protein called β-amyloid precursor protein (APP) in the brain. This “APP staining”, as it’s known, could be an important tool for showing how children have died. This is the first time a detailed study of APP has been undertaken in SIDS cases.

“All 48 of the SIDS deaths we looked at showed APP staining in the brain,” Professor Byard says.

“The staining by itself does not necessarily tell us the cause of death, but it can help to clarify the mechanism.

“The really interesting point is that the pattern of APP staining in SIDS cases – both the amount and distribution of the staining – was very similar to those in children who had died from asphyxia.”

Professor Byard says that in one case, the presence of APP staining in a baby who had died of SIDS led to the identification of a significant sleep breathing problem, or apnoea, in the deceased baby’s sibling.

“This raised the possibility of an inherited sleep apnoea problem, and this knowledge could be enough to help save a child’s life,” Professor Byard says.

“Because of the remarkable similarity in SIDS and asphyxia cases, the question is now: is there an asphyxia-based mechanism of death in SIDS? We don’t know the answer to that yet, but it looks very promising.”

This study was conducted at the University of Adelaide by visiting postdoctoral researcher Dr Lisbeth Jensen from Aarhus University Hospital, Denmark, and was funded by SIDS and Kids South Australia. The results have been published in the journal Neuropathology and Applied Neurobiology.

“This work also fits in very well with collaborative research that is currently being undertaken between the University of Adelaide and Harvard University, on chemical changes in parts of the brain that control breathing,” Professor Byard says.

Link to Original Article:

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Chichester Business Association Hosts Annual 5K Race

Published on April 14, 2014

Chichester Business Association Hosts Annual 5K Race/Walk to Benefit the Delaware County Cribs for Kids Program on May 17

April 14, 2014 (Chichester, Pa) – The Chichester Business Association will host its annual 5K race/walk on May 17 starting at 9 a.m. at the Upper Chichester Township Building, 8500 Furey Road.

Cribs for Kids Logo

This community-focused event, which benefits theDelaware County Cribs for Kids program, offers a challenging 5K course for the avid runner and a two-mile course for those interested in walking. Local businesses and local residents are invited to participate, with pre-registration discounts available For general questions regarding the event, please call (610) 485-1356.

In 2008, little David Angelo Cruz, son of Dave and Adrianne Cruz of Collingdale, tragically passed away as a two-month old from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). Though devastated by their loss, the Cruzes and their extended family members decided to turn their attention to promoting SIDS awareness in Delaware County communities. Jon Ferro, Chichester Business Association president and corporate secretary/owner of Ferro Fuel Oil, Inc., comments, “The Cruz family experienced such tragedy, but they are an inspiration to all of us, as it was their focus and passion to create awareness for infant safety that led to our association’s annual 5K race/walk.”

Cribs for Kids, a national program established in 1998 in Pittsburgh, provides underserved families with education, awareness and cribs to curtail infant deaths and injury resulting from an infant’s sleeping environment. SIDS is the leading cause of death among infants under the age of 12 months. Bed-sharing and co-sleeping are associated with an increased risk of SIDS. Since 2006, Crozer-Keystone Health System has partnered with the national Cribs for Kids program to serve those in need in the local community through the Delaware County Cribs for Kids program. Joanne Craig, administrative director for Crozer-Keystone Women and Children’s Health Services and director of the Delaware County Cribs for Kids program, comments, “The work we do requires wonderful partners to support our mission of providing a safe sleeping environment for infants. The funds raised through this event allow for families in need to receive infant safety, SIDS prevention education and a new Graco portable crib.”

Runners and walkers receive a discounted price of $20 per person, or $100 per team, if they choose to register in advance through Registration can also be handled on-site from 7:45-9 a.m. on May 17 for a $25 per-person fee. Sponsorships are available and monetary donations are also encouraged. All checks should be made payable to the Chichester Business Foundation, a 501 (c)(3) registered organization, and can be sent to 2124 Vernon Avenue, Boothwyn, Pa, 19061. If you are not able to run or walk in the event, you may choose to volunteer for a variety of different event needs, and volunteer registration forms can be found at

Founded in 1960, the Chichester Business Association strives to unite businesses together for the betterment of the community as a whole. Jon Ferro comments, “This event annually offers our local business community the chance to raise money for an important cause, while having the chance to get some exercise and network all at the same time. We are looking forward to a very successful 2014 event!” For more information on the business association or to learn how to become a member, visit

Link to Original Article:
 © 2014 Crozer-Keystone Health System. All rights reserved.

Help Support Act (S 314 / HR 669) by Nov. 20th

After more than four years of advocacy, the Sudden Unexpected Death Data Enhancement and Awareness Act (H.R.669 / S.314) finally has a committee hearing date in the U.S. House of Representatives! The Committee on Energy and Commerce / Subcommittee on Health will hold the hearing on Wednesday, November 20th. Watch the hearing LIVE at:

1) If you live or work in any of the states that the following Congressional members represent, please take a quick moment to help save babies. Tell Congress to pass the Sudden Unexpected Death Data Expansion and Awareness Act (S 314 / HR 669) today! CONTACT THEM BY NOVEMBER 20TH by clicking on the link below and using our online e-mail campaign:


2) Call your representative’s* office before November 20th and ask for their support
of H.R.669 at the hearing and in any negotiations that follow.
*You can find contact info for the below members through their website using the formula:


Endorsing Organizations

  • American Academy of Pediatrics
  • American Association of Nurse Practitioners
  • American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children
  • Charlie’s Kids Foundation
  • Child Death, Near Death and Stillbirth Commission (of DE)
  • Child Injury Prevention Alliance
  • Children’s Hospital Association
  • CJ Foundation for SIDS
  • Cribs for Kids
  • First Candle
  • International Association of Coroners and Medical Examiners
  • Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association
  • Kids In Danger
  • Maternity Care Coalition
  • National Association of Medical Examiners
  • Safe Kids Upstate (SC)
  • Safe Kids Worldwide
  • Safe States
  • Society for Advancement of Violence and Injury Research
  • Society of Medicolegal Death Investigator
  • Sudden Unexplained Death in Childhood Program
  • The Star Legacy Foundation


Brainstem abnormalities found in “SIDS” infants…

Brainstem abnormalities found in “SIDS” infants, in all kinds of sleep environments

CONTACT:Andrea Duggan
Boston Children’s Hospital

SOURCE Boston Children’s Hospital

BOSTON, Nov. 11, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Investigators at Boston Children’s Hospital report that many infants dying suddenly and unexpectedly, in all kinds of sleep environments, have underlying brainstem abnormalities and are not all normal prior to death.

The researchers also point to the need to detect and treat this underlying vulnerability early, the focus of their current work. They report their findings in the December issue of Pediatrics.

The investigators, led by Hannah Kinney, MD, a neuropathologist at Boston Children’s, have shown over the past two decades that infants who die suddenly, unexpectedly and without explanation—whose deaths are generally attributed to sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS)—have differences in brainstem chemistry that set them apart from infants dying of other causes.

These abnormalities impair brainstem circuits that help control breathing, heart rate, blood pressure and temperature control during sleep, and, the researchers believe, prevent sleeping babies from rousing when they rebreathe too much carbon dioxide (due to inadequate ventilation), breathe too little oxygen or become overheated (from overbundling).

At the same time, epidemiologic studies have shown that infants dying suddenly and unexpectedly are often found sleeping face down with their face in the pillow, or sleeping next to an adult in the bed—environments that have the potential to lead to smothering and death by asphyxia.

Read More»

Carilion Clinic Children’s Hospital Receives Cribs for Kids® Grant

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Carilion Clinic Children’s Hospital recently received a grant from Cribs for Kids® National Infant Safe Sleep Initiative to assist families who could not otherwise afford safe sleeping environments for their infants.

The grant will provide safe sleep education to parents and caregivers and Graco Pack ‘n Plays and crib sheets.

Carilion’s children’s facility is one of 40 community organizations across the country to receive funds from the Joseph A. Hardy Sr. Mini-Grant Program, sponsored by 84 Lumber Co.

Suffocation and strangulation in unsafe sleep environments is a top killer of infants, according to research.

Carilion Clinic Children’s Hospital offers a safe sleep program for income-eligible participants where they are taught the American Academy of Pediatrics safe sleep recommendations. Upon completion, participants receive a free portable pack-n-play crib.

Cribs for Kids®  works to reduce the risk of injury and death of infants caused by unsafe sleep environments. More than 400 Cribs for Kids®  partners throughout the country provide educational materials regarding safe sleeping for infants as well as other safety tips to protect babies from sleep-related deaths. For more information, visit

The grant is named in honor of Joseph A. Hardy Sr., who founded of 84 Lumber Co. in 1956. The company owns and operates more than 250 stores, component plants, door shops, installation centers and engineered wood product shops in 30 states.

Link to Originial article:  Roanoke Times –

Michigan DCH – LaTonya King PSA

Michigan Dept. of Community Health released their new PSA on June 28, 2013, featuring LaTonya King – 11 time national champion boxer from Detroit.

“Your baby should not have to fight to get a good night’s sleep. Learn the rules of safe sleep

2013-5th Annual Breath of Life Stroll Photos

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