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Mothers and Babies Perinatal Network Emphasizes Safe Sleep For Infants

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Mothers and Babies Perinatal Network brought awareness to infant mortality and safe sleep practices in the region at a press conference on Tuesday.

According to the Broome County Child Fatality Review Team, 18 child deaths between 2007 and 2018 were a result of co-sleeping or sharing a sleep surface with at least one adult and 35 cases of child deaths involved hazardous sleep environments.

"This could be pillows, cushions, blankets, stuffed animals, pets, siblings, and includes placing a child on its stomach to sleep," said  Broome County Public Health Department Director Rachel Leri.

Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo spoke about legislation to promote safe sleep environments, including the bill signed by Governor Cuomo that would prohibit the sale of crib bumper pads and use in daycares.

Mothers and Babies is urging caretakers to follow the ABCs of safe sleep for babies. This includes sleeping alone, on their back, and in a safe crib. Area hospitals also provide education to parents of newborns to prevent sleeping deaths. 

"To the grandparents and others who did put their babies on their bellies, we really need to say we know better now and we really don't want to take the chances," said Mothers and Babies Executive Director Sharon Chesna. 

September is Infant Mortality Awareness Month. For more information on safe sleep for infants, head to the Mothers and Babies website.