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A new education toolkit has been launched to help service providers discuss safe infant sleep practices with First Nations and Aboriginal families and help reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) and sudden unexplained death in infancy (SUDI).
The toolkit, Honouring Our Babies: Safe Sleep Cards & Guide, is interactive, evidence-informed, and incorporates cultural beliefs, practices, and issues specific to First Nations and Aboriginal communities. The toolkit includes a deck of 21 discussion cards and seven illustrated cards that can be used to prompt and guide discussions with families about safe infant sleep as well as a facilitator's guide with more information on each card's topic, research, resources, and graphics. The toolkit is based on the Safe Sleep Environment for Infants 0-12 Months Guideline developed by Perinatal Services BC, an agency of the Provincial Health Services Authority.
SIDS is the death of a baby under one year of age, which is sudden, unexpected, and without a clear cause. SIDS usually happens during sleep or napping and is the most common cause of death in babies between the ages of one month and one year. SUDI is the sudden unexpected and unexplained death of an infant where risk factors are present and may or may not contribute to the death. Although the exact cause or causes are not known, there are clear safe sleep practices that are known to reduce a baby's risk for SIDS and SUDI. The toolkit is designed to help service providers talk to families about these safe sleep practices.
Research shows that Aboriginal babies in BC were four times more likely to die from SIDS than non-Aboriginal babies. In response, a special Tripartite working group was formed among the First Nations Health Authority, Government of Canada, and the Government of BC - with input from First Nations and Aboriginal Elders, community members, and content experts - to develop a culturally appropriate safe sleep training initiative that could be incorporated into existing programs and services. Honouring Our Babies: Safe Sleep Cards & Guide is an initiative of the Tripartite First Nations and Aboriginal Maternal and Child Health Committee and was led by Perinatal Services BC.
Download the toolkit Honouring Our Babies: Safe Sleep Cards & Guide
The most important ways to create a safe sleep place for your baby are to:
Provincial Health Services Authority, Perinatal Services BC, First Nations Health Authority & Ministry of Health
Article adapted by Medical News Today from original press release. Click 'references' tab above for source.
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Provincial Health Services Authority. "New toolkit launched to promote safe infant sleep among First Nations and Aboriginal families." Medical News Today. MediLexicon, Intl., 17 Oct. 2013. Web.
9 Dec. 2013. <http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/267540>
Provincial Health Services Authority. (2013, October 17). "New toolkit launched to promote safe infant sleep among First Nations and Aboriginal families." Medical News Today. Retrieved from
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