Baltimore City Health Commissioner Issues Statement in Response to Updated Infant Sleep Guidelines


Media Contacts:

Mona Rock: Office: (443) 984-2623, Cell: (410) 375-7763
Perry Meyers: Office: (410) 545-0823, Cell: (667) 216-0723

BALTIMORE, MD (October 25, 2016) – Baltimore City Health Commissioner Dr. Leana Wen issued the following statement in response to the American Academy of Pediatrics’ release of updated safe sleep guidelines for infants:

“We applaud the American Academy of Pediatrics for issuing these updated guidelines. We must do everything we can to ensure the health of wellbeing of our youngest and most vulnerable residents: our babies.

“Since 2009, we have been encouraging safe sleep practices through B'more for Healthy Babies, a public-private partnership led by the Baltimore City Health Department, the Family League of Baltimore, and more than 100 public and private partners to ensure that all babies are born at a healthy weight, full-term, and ready to thrive in healthy families.

“B’more for Healthy Babies relies on credible messengers to share clear and concise information about safe sleep practices via mass media campaigns, community outreach and engagement, and provider education. The messages encourage parents to put their babies to sleep following the A-B-C-D method: ‘On their Back. In a Crib. Don’t smoke. No Exceptions.’ These efforts are combined with improved public policies, efficient use of community resources, home visiting programs, and other services to improve the health of babies in Baltimore City.

“In 2015, Baltimore City experienced the lowest infant mortality rate on record: 8.4 per 1,000 live births—a 19 percent decline from 2014. Since the implementation of B'more for Healthy Babies in 2009, infant mortality in Baltimore City has declined by 38 percent, while the rate for African American infants has reduced by nearly 50 percent during same time period.

“Sleep-related deaths are largely preventable, and we have a moral imperative to ensure that families have the knowledge and resources so that babies can thrive. Through collaboration and partnership like B’more for Healthy Babies, we can have a collective impact and save lives.”

Related Stories

Baltimore City Health Department Announces Beginning of 2018 Code Red Extreme Heat Season

BALTIMORE, MD (May 15, 2018)—The Baltimore City Health Department today announced the start of Baltimore City’s Code Red Extreme Heat season.

Baltimore City Officials Announce Initiative with Hospitals to Improve Treatment for Opioid Use Disorders

Levels of Care Proposal Open for Public Comment

BALTIMORE (April 30, 2018) — Today, Mayor Catherine E. Pugh and Baltimore City Health Commissioner Dr. Leana Wen joined the leadership of all 11 Baltimore City hospitals to announce a new initiative focused on implementing and recognizing best practices for responding to the opioid epidemic within the City’s hospitals.

Baltimore City Officials Urge Residents to Safely Dispose of Unused Prescription Drugs

BALTIMORE, MD (APRIL 27) - On Saturday, April 28, Baltimore City officials will recognize National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, a nationwide initiative to highlight safe, convenient, and responsible means of disposing of prescription drugs in communities, while raising awareness about prescription drug addiction.