There is nothing more devastating than the loss of an infant. According to the CDC, in just 2018 alone, there were nearly 3,500 sudden unexpected infant deaths (SUID) in the United States, usually occurring in infants less than a year old. One of the leading causes for SUID is the accidental suffocation and strangulation in bed, but now because of St. Vincent Healthcare’s strong commitment to the health of our little ones, families and their new addition can sleep well and sleep safe, each night.
St. Vincent Healthcare is the first hospital in Billings and within the SCL Health system to be recognized by the National Safe Sleep Hospital Certification Program as a “Gold Recipient,” for our commitment to reducing infant, sleep-related deaths by promoting and educating on best safe sleep practices.
The National Safe Sleep Hospital Certification Program was created by Cribs for Kids®, an organization dedicated to providing a clear concise education resulting in a decrease in infant sleep related deaths.
St. Vincent’s Mother/Newborn, NICU and Pediatric units are dedicated to doing all they can to reduce infant mortality rates and take great pride in educating each family about the importance of a safe sleep environment for their new baby.
“When in the hospital, families put trust in our care of their little ones. We are modeling the importance of what is a safe sleep environment,” said Kristen O’Brien, a Registered Nurse in St. Vincent Healthcare’s NICU. “Through our education on safe sleep practices, St. Vincent is providing the resources and comfort that our families need, knowing that their child is sleeping safely throughout the night.”
In addition to making sure babies are in a safe environment within the hospital, St. Vincent Healthcare is also committed to providing education to the communities we serve. Thanks to a generous donation from the St. Vincent Healthcare Foundation, portable cribs are being provided to families through the Family Tree Center and the Billings YWCA to help support mothers in crisis and provide a safe sleeping environment for their infants.
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