Taking aim at sudden infant death syndrome

Taking aim at sudden
infant death syndrome

For some of the more than 4 million American families delivering a baby this year, the information they receive may mean the difference between life and death for their baby.

For the past 10 years, the Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) Alliance has been a key partner in the national Back To Sleep campaign, which has resulted in a more than 50 percent decrease in SIDS rates nationwide. The equivalent of sparing more than 3,000 infant lives each year, this represents the greatest decline in infant mortality in more than 20 years.

Despite this tremendous success, SIDS remains the leading cause of death in infants under age 1. In addition, more than 26,000 babies are stillborn in the United States each year, and countless other infants die suddenly and unexpectedly due to other causes before reaching their second birthday.

To continue this progress and save even more precious lives, the SIDS Alliance has expanded its mission to include all sudden infant deaths during the prenatal period through two years of age, including stillbirths. Providing compassionate bereavement support to families experiencing the death of a baby continues to be an important part of that mission. To reflect this expansion, the name of the organization has been changed to First Candle, Helping Babies Survive and Thrive.

The evolution of the SIDS Alliance into First Candle is a direct result of the success of their research and educational outreach programs.

To mark this transition, First Candle will be launching the organization’s largest educational outreach effort since the Back To Sleep campaign.

Joining them in this effort are Albertsons, Halo Innovations and Regal Lager, Inc. Together they’ll distribute lifesaving messages to parents and caregivers in communities nationwide. In addition, each partner will make a contribution of more than $100,000 to support First Candle’s research, education and bereavement support programs.

Information on SIDS, reducing the risk of infant death, availability of local and national bereavement services, and options for giving can be found by calling (800) 221-7437 or by visiting the Website at www.firstcandle.org.

This story was provided by the North American Precis Syndicate.

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