Infant Safe Sleep
Affiliations and Partnerships
The North Carolina Infant Safe Sleep Program (formerly the NC Back to Sleep Campaign) is a public education and awareness initiative designed to increase understanding about both Infant Safe Sleep and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). The goal is to reduce SIDS and infant sleep related deaths of babies in North Carolina.
Since the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommended all babies should be placed on their backs to sleep in 1992, deaths from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome have declined dramatically. Although, nationally, sleep-related deaths from other causes, including suffocation, entrapment and asphyxia, have increased.
In North Carolina, SIDS is the third leading cause of infant deaths overall, but for infants ages 1 - 12 months of age, SIDS is the primary cause of death. Each year in North Carolina, approximately 100 families experience the tragedy of SIDS.
Since 1994, the then known N.C. Back to Sleep Campaign, has informed families, childcare providers, health and social service providers and policy makers about this leading cause of infant death and about the steps they can take to help protect infants.
The N.C. Back to Sleep Campaign supports the work of the N.C. SIDS Program by providing technical assistance to the Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Public Health and in-service training to SIDS counselors across the state.
In 2002, in response to a significant increase in SIDS deaths occurring in child care settings in the United States, the N.C. Back to Sleep Campaign launched the ITS-SIDS or Infant/Toddler Safe Sleep and SIDS Risk-Reduction Childcare Project.
A strong media presence has always been a component of the Infant Safe Sleep program. NCHSF has developed both radio and television spots and been interviewed on live broadcasts. In 2011 NCHSF created a commercial, Danger and follow-up creating a Spanish version of the same, Peligro. These ads aired in markets across North Carolina throughout the first quarter of 2012. NCHSF has also developed both webinars and webisodes which can be viewed here.
One of the primary goals of the Infant Safe Sleep initiative is to create and disseminate materials using current information. All of our materials are created in English and Spanish and are written appropriately for all audiences. Materials are reviewed by the Safe Sleep Advisory Committee, focus groups with parents, and internally by staff. You can view our online Parenting Publications.
Affiliations and Partnerships
The N.C. Back to Sleep Campaign coordinator is an active member of leading national SIDS-related organizations including the Association of SIDS and Infant Mortality Programs (ASIP), Project Impact and the First Candle/SIDS Alliance. NCHSF is also a member of the North Carolina Child Fatality Task Force and participate in the Perinatal Health subcommittee.
A key to success of the N.C. Back to Sleep Campaign has been the variety of public/private partnerships developed in the past decade. These partnerships have ranged from a family-run diaper service sharing information with their customers and a variety of childcare facilities to the North Carolina Outdoor Advertising Association, the North Carolina Pediatric Society and the American Academy of Pediatrics.
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Last updated: July 2013