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Hundreds of Babies Kept Safe Each Year

Hundreds of Babies Kept Safe Each Year with Support From Pregnancy Help Services

In the past 10 years Pregnancy Help has made a significant impact on keeping babies safe by providing nearly 5,000 bassinets (baby beds) and 52,000 items of baby bedding.

In the past year alone in 8 centres across New Zealand 459 bassinets and 5,630 items of bedding have been provided to families.

The provision of these bassinets and of the bedding has been accompanied by education about safe sleeping and families regularly tell us that if it weren't for the bassinet provided by Pregnancy Help they wouldn't have had somewhere safe to sleep baby.

As well as bassinets Pregnancy Help has provided to thousands of New Zealand families, information and education about safe sleeping of their babies and the associated risk factors, so that parents are enabled to make their own informed choices.

Pregnancy Help agrees with Child Health Researcher Professor Ed Mitchell’s comments in the recently released 'Pod' leads to drop in cot death cases’, “Any baby that is being exposed to smoke during pregnancy is at risk. Those babies that are born small are at risk. I'd like to see this programme targeting all these groups, if it were expanded, that figure could fall by another 25 to just 10, say Professor Mitchell.

As an organisation we would like to see “programmes” and or education about “key” safe sleeping information and strategies available to all families in particular most vulnerable. The information provided should cover all risk factors, says Sharyn Crawford, National Coordinator of Pregnancy Help. It is extremely pleasing to see the drop in cot death rates, says Sharyn and we are certainly willing target our services to help achieve and or contribute to a further fall in cot death rates.

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Whilst the experts are saying that the huge drop in the sudden deaths of high-risk babies is all down to one new innovation, it is important to bear in mind that anything is only effective if it is used correctly. The most important message around safe sleep is that “every sleep is a safe sleep for every baby”, meaning no matter where i.e. at home or away from home, or what option is used as a baby’s bed – pod, wahakura, bassinette, the baby is put down to sleep safely - every time, no exceptions. And that other risk factors such as smoking, alcohol are recognised and minimised.

We have active relationships with other services and organisations that provide safe sleep information and services and consider that working together to deliver consistent key messages and support is most beneficial. We are willing and able to work with all cultural groups to support them to make informed choices as they prepare for parenthood and in particular how and where they will sleep their babies.

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