Florida passes safe sleep education bill; Community organizations join safe sleep initiative

Parents of newborns are now required to receive safe sleep education and information before they are released from the hospital or birthing center, thanks to a new law that went into effect July 1. In light of the new law, the Florida SIDS Alliance and the Florida Association of Healthy Start Coalitions have partnered up to bring safe sleep education statewide with the Safe to Sleep Initiative.

The Safe to Sleep initiative, which kicked off July 1, will provide safe sleep training and education to health professionals and parents to increase public awareness and reduce the number of sleep-related deaths. Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and other sleep-related deaths are the leading causes of death among infants under the age of one nationwide and in Northeast Florida.

Safe sleep tips:

  • Always place baby on his or her back to sleep, for naps and at night, to reduce the risk of SIDS.
  • Put baby to sleep in a separate sleep area in the same room where you sleep.
    If you bring baby into your bed to breastfeed, make sure to put him or her back into a separate sleep area, such as a safety-approved crib, bassinet, or portable play area when you are finished. 
  • Use a firm sleep surface, covered by a fitted sheet, to reduce the risk of SIDS and other sleep-related causes of death. Remove all loose bedding, soft objects and toys.

Safe to Sleep is an expansion of the Back to Sleep campaign started by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development in 1994 to reduce the number of sleep-related deaths and SIDS cases.