A bold new initiative in Baltimore designed to decrease our high infant mortality rate • Will work on different levels to affect change – policy, services, community and individual levels What is B’more for Healthy Babies?
Our vision: To ensure that all of Baltimore’s babies are born healthy weight, full term, and ready to thrive in healthy families. What is B’more for Healthy Babies?
What is B’more for Healthy Babies? B’more for Healthy Babies will include: • A citywide media campaign • Intensive, innovative efforts in high-risk neighborhoods • Consistent messages across government and nonprofit agencies
120 babies under the age of one died in Baltimore City last year • Baltimore has the 4th worst infant mortality rate in the U.S. • The national rate is 7 deaths per 1000 live births • Baltimore’s rate is 12.1 deaths per 1000 live births • African American: 14.3 per 1,000 • White: 7.3 per 1,000 Why do we need B’more for Healthy Babies?
Why do we need B’more for Healthy Babies? The leading causes of infant mortality in Baltimore are: #1 Prematurity and low birth weight complications #2 Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and unsafe sleep conditions #3 Birth defects Our First Campaign Will Address Safe Sleep
Last year, our city had more cases of sleep-related infant deaths than in any previous year • Each month, an average of 2 babies in Baltimore City died from unsafe sleep conditions • Most of these deaths were preventable Baltimore Babies Will Sleep Safe
Baltimore Babies Will Sleep Safe • The campaign will take a tough stance against a tough problem • We will show real people telling real stories about their own tragic losses • We will not sugarcoat the issue… It’s a matter of life or death
Last year in Baltimore City: Jordan, a 2-month-old infant, was sleeping in an adult bed with his 3-year-old cousin and 17-year-old sister. When the sister woke, she found the 3-year-old on top of Jordan. He had been suffocated. Jordan’s story
Could this tragic death have been prevented?
Last year in Baltimore City: Grandma fed Keisha, her 3-month old granddaughter. Then she and Keisha snuggled on the couch for a quick nap. Keisha’s father walked into the room a few minutes later to his worst nightmare. Keisha’s head was tilted in an awkward position and her airway was obstructed. Keisha was dead. Keisha’s story
You are a key ambassador of our safe sleep messages • We want you to tell mothers, fathers, relatives, and caretakers about the ABCs of safe sleep • Every baby counts on you! What can you do?
Baltimore Babies Must Sleep: Alone On theirBacks In aCrib Our key message:The ABCs of Safe Sleep
Alone… Not with mom, dad, a brother or sister or anyone else Alone every time – every night and every nap
Most babies who died of unsafe sleep last year were sleeping with adults or other children when they died. Alone…
You may hear these concerns: ‘It’s safer to have my baby next to me at night.’ ‘I don’t want to get up to pick up the baby.’ ‘It’s more comfortable for me and the baby.’ Also: Bed sharing is common among some communities. Relatives, friends and others may have strong opinions about bed sharing. Alone…
Possible responses to these concerns: Safety: ‘The most important thing is your baby’s safety. It doesn’t take much for your baby to suffocate.’ Convenience: ‘Keep the crib or bassinet right next to your bed, where you can easily reach the baby.’ Comfort: ‘You’ll sleep better if you know your baby is safe.’ Alone…
…on theBack … The baby must sleep on his or her back every time he or she is laid down to sleep, at night and for naps Not on the stomach or side
Many babies who died last year in Baltimore City were found sleeping on their stomachs Two babies who died last year had been placed on their side to sleep …on theBack …
You may hear concerns about: ‘My baby sleeps better on his/her stomach.’ Possible response to this concern: ‘Sleeping on the stomach is NOT safe. Babies sleep more deeply on their stomachs, and that makes it harder for them to arouse.’ ‘Your baby will become used to sleeping on his or her back in a couple of days.’ ‘There are ways to soothe your baby, such as using a pacifier.’ …on theBack …
The biggest concern about putting a baby to sleep on his or her back is the fear of choking. …on theBack …
No! When a baby is on its back, the air pipe (trachea) is above the food tube (esophagus). Anything that is spit up from the stomach has to go against gravity to be inhaled into the air pipe. A healthy baby generally will turn its head so that spit up goes out of its mouth – not back down its throat. Is a baby more likely to choke on its back?
Stomach Sleeping Is Dangerous for Baby However, when a baby is on its stomach, anything spit up can block the air pipe and cause choking or breathing problems.
. . . in a Crib The crib should have: A firm mattress A tight-fitting sheet …and nothing else
. . . in a Crib • No toys • No bumpers • No pillows • No blankets • No stuffed animals
. . . in a Crib In Baltimore City, most babies who died in unsafe sleep conditions last year were found in adult beds or couches with other siblings or adults.
. . . in a Crib You may hear concerns about: • Availability • Cribs are available through Baltimore HealthCare Access. • Portability & convenience • Some cribs – like Pack N’ Plays -- are easy to carry, setup, and take down. They can be moved from room to room.
. . . in a Crib • Suggest that parents: • Rearrange the room to place the crib near their bed. • Bring the baby to bed for feeding and bonding and then put the baby back in the crib for sleep.
Babies exposed to tobacco smoke in the womb or after birth are at higher risk for SIDS. In Baltimore, research showed that babies exposed to tobacco smoke in the womb were five times more likely to die from SIDS. Babies exposed to smoke in the home also are increased risk for SIDS. Don’tSmoke
During a home visit Make sure there is a safe & empty crib for the baby: Ask parents to empty the crib if there are things inside it Make sure the sheet is tight Ask Mom or caregiver to show you how she will place the baby in the crib Encourage parents to stop smoking completely, or at least to avoid smoking in the house, in the car…anywhere near the baby Give out a safe sleep reminder or other materials
During a home visit Help families obtain a crib if needed! Call Baltimore Health Care Access at 410-649-0500
During routine work Even a short reminder can make a difference: Remind parents to use a crib for their infant Give out a safe sleep reminder or other materials
Baltimore Babies Must Sleep: Alone On their Backs In a Crib Remember our key message
Every Baby Counts on You! Be an ambassador for B’more for Healthy Babies Thank you! Remember…