UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital receives national certification for its efforts to reduce sleep-related deaths among infants
University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital was recently recognized by the National Safe Sleep Hospital Certification Program as a Gold Certified Safe Sleep Hospital. This is the second time UI Stead Family Children’s has received this five-year certification for its commitment to teaching safe sleep best practices to families with infants.
Although sleep-related deaths continue to decline each year, they remain the number one cause of infant deaths after the first month of age. UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital has been committed to educating families on safe infant sleep for years, and in 2016 became the first hospital in Iowa to obtain National Safe Sleep Hospital Certification for its efforts.
The National Safe Sleep Hospital Certification Program was created by Cribs for Kids®, the only national infant safe sleep organization. Based in Pittsburgh, PA, Cribs for kids is dedicated to preventing infant sleep-related deaths due to accidental suffocation. As a Nationally Certified Safe Sleep Hospital, UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital is recognized for following the safe sleep guidelines recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), and providing training programs for healthcare team members, and family caregivers.
“Sleep-Related Death (SRD) results in the loss of more than 3,500 infants every year in the U.S.,” said Michael H. Goodstein, M.D., neonatologist and medical director of research at Cribs for Kids®. “We know that modeling safe infant sleep in the hospital and providing education to families has a significant effect on infant mortality. Cribs for Kids Hospital Certification Program is designed to recognize those hospitals that are taking an active role in reducing these preventable deaths.”
Penny Smith, BSN, RNC-NIC, a neonatal nurse specialist at UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital adds, “UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital has been focused on safe sleep since 2013 when our Safe Sleep Task Force was convened. This multidisciplinary group of health care providers works to educate staff and families on safe sleep to reduce the risk of SIDS and sleep-related death for infants up to one year of age. We also work hard to model safe sleep in the hospital. In maintaining our status as a Gold Certified Safe Sleep Hospital we continue to strive toward excellence, because our patients deserve nothing less.”
The National Safe Sleep Hospital Certification Program was created in partnership with leading infant health and safety organizations such as All Baby & Child, The National Center for the Review & Prevention of Child Deaths, Association of SIDS and Infant Mortality Programs, Kids in Danger, Children’s Safety Network, American SIDS Institute, Charlie’s Kids, CJ Foundation for SIDS, and numerous state American Academy of Pediatric chapters and health departments.
According to Judith A. Bannon, Executive Director and Founder for Cribs for Kids®, “The certification program launched in 2015 in Pittsburgh, PA, home of the Cribs for Kids® national headquarters. Hundreds of hospitals across the US are certified. We welcome UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital to this expanding group of committed hospitals. This will have a profound effect on the saving babies’ lives.”