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Metro Health Hospital Provides Safe Sleep Gift to All Newborns

The Spartan Stores Family Childbirth Center at Metro Health Hospital is providing all newborns with a safe, wearable blanket designed to make sleep safer when they leave the maternity ward.

The blanket, called a SleepSack, helps parents ensure their baby sleeps safer during naps and at night. The embroidered message "Back is best" reminds all caregivers to put babies on their back at bedtime. The gift is possible thanks to a grant provided by the Metro Health Hospital Foundation.

Providing the SleepSack to parents is another way that Metro Health Hospital can educate new parents on safe sleeping practices before they take their baby home.

"Fluffy quilts, comforters, pillows and bumper pads may look cute in a crib, but they do not provide a safe sleep environment for babies," said Laura McDonald, clinical director of obstetrics. "Each year too many infants die from sleep-related issues, including Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. We want to help prevent the tragic loss of a child by doing our part in making sure that parents are fully educated in safe sleeping practices

"We are incredibly appreciative of this generous grant, which will allow our staff to educate new parents on safe sleeping practices for their babies. The SleepSack is a wonderful gift that we are now able to provide parents leaving Metro Health."

Metro Health is committed to maternal and family education outreach. In addition to providing the SleepSack, Metro Health Hospital staff also shares comprehensive safety tips with new parents, including the following safe sleeping practices:

  • Put babies to sleep in a crib or bassinet, not in the parental bed or on a couch
  • Do not have toys, blankets or other objects in the sleeping area
  • Use a firm mattress with a tight-fitting sheet
  • Ensure that the babies face is uncovered
  • Put the child to sleep on his or her back

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joseph.weller@metrogr.org