SAFE BABIES: New Program Helps Educate Parents
SIDS is blamed for the deaths of 2,200 death of infants in the U.S. every year.
Although the syndrome isn’t entirely preventable, the risk can be reduced.
Now, all metro hospitals are putting a national program in place to help teach parents safe sleeping techniques for their little ones.
As a new Mom of premature twins, Lindsey JohnsonMartin already has a lot on her mind.
“There 6 days old and this is Eliajah, and that’ Owen,” says JohnsonMartin.
Since she stepped into the hospital the staff at Blank Children’s has provided her with the information needed to keep her new ones safe once they go home.
Every NICU baby is cared for in the sleep sacks, and parents are given a new one to take home.
“They’ve taught me how to use them, and they’re great to keep their little arms in so they’re not constantly playing with their face and waking themselves up and they keep them calm and warm,” says JohnsonMartin.
The sacks are designed to replace a blanket, and also reduce the risk for SIDS and suffocation.
They’re provided as part of the national program HALO, that the hospital adopted to keep parents in the know.
“Babies can roll and you don’t want them getting stuck and not being able to roll back so starting out on your back without anything in the crib; no bumpers, no stuffed animals, no extra blankets, that will help them stay safe while sleeping,” says NICU nurse Kelly Geist.
For JohnsonMartin it’s one less thing to worry about, so she can spend her time focusing on the two newest members of the family.
“It’s very helpful, because you have to buy so many things already and this is one less thing you have to worry about when you go home,” says JohnsonMartin.
The educational portion of the HALO Program is also in place at Mercy, Broadlawns and Iowa Lutheran hospitals.