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Other Ways to Share Safe Sleep Information

Other Ways to Share Safe Sleep Information

There are other ways you can share information on the safe sleep guidelines and promote safe sleep. From having articles addressing safe sleep included in your professional or agency newsletters to doing press releases, they all have an impact.

  • When drafting newsletter articles, consider your audience. Do they need general information about the safe sleep guidelines? Could they benefit from learning more about available safe sleep resources or training opportunities? Are there common questions you hear or issues you see? Use newsletter articles to make sure everyone has access to the same information.

    Sample Article - General

    Did you know that a baby dies due to sleep-related causes  nearly every other day in Michigan and these deaths are overwhelmingly preventable? To keep babies 0-12 months of age safe, while sleeping at night and during naps, follow the American of Academy of Pediatrics guidelines.

    • Place baby on back, in a crib, bassinet or pack and play for every sleep time.
    • Use a firm mattress with a tightly fitted sheet.
    • Keep baby's sleep space clutter free - no pillows, blankets, bumper pads, or toys.
    • Avoid covering baby's head or overheating. Instead of a blanket, consider using a sleep sack, wearable blanket or footed sleeper to keep baby warm.
    • Keep baby in a smoke-free and nicotine-free environment.
    • Support breastfeeding and immunizations.

    Learn more about the safe sleep guidelines and why they are recommended to keep babies safe. You can order resource materials from the MDHHS Clearinghouse and find local safe sleep resources for families.
     

    • Sample Article - Infant Safe Sleep Month

      Governor Gretchen Whitmer declared October 2023 Infant Safe Sleep Month calling attention to the importance of preventing sleep-related infant deaths. To keep babies 0-12 months of age safe, while sleeping at night and during naps, parents and caregivers are encouraged to follow the American Academy of Pediatrics guidelines:

      • Place baby on back, in a crib, bassinet or pack and play for every sleep time.
      • Use a firm mattress with a tightly fitted sheet.
      • Keep baby's sleep space clutter free - no pillows, blankets, bumper pads, or toys.
      • Instead of a blanket, consider using a sleep sack, wearable blanket or footed sleeper to keep baby warm.
      • Remind everyone who cares for baby, including babysitters and family members, how to keep baby safe while sleeping.
      • Keep baby in a smoke-free and nicotine-free environment.
      • Support breastfeeding and immunizations.

      Learn more about the safe sleep guidelines and why they are recommended to keep babies safe.

      Nationally, October is also SIDS Awareness Month. Check out what the Safe to Sleep® Campaign is doing to help spread the word. Take time to promote infant safe sleep in your community - educate your clients, friends and family. Join us and learn to how you can make a difference in October, and all year long!

      If you have any questions about infant safe sleep, please contact the Infant Safe Sleep Program at MDHHS-InfantSafeSleep@michigan.gov.

       

  • Newspapers and TV stations receive hundreds of press releases every week. To increase the chances of getting your press release covered, consider the following:

    • Keep press releases brief and to the point. It should be no longer than one page.
    • Write clearly.
    • Include contact name and number so that the media can reach you with further questions.
       

    Press Release Format

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  Date

    Contact person's name, phone number (can also include agency name, fax number, email address, web site address)

    Headline

    City, State - Opening paragraph (should contain who, what when, where, why)

    Body of text - Should include relevant information, statistics, quotes, etc. 

    After last paragraph, summarize message one last time. For additional information direct readers/viewers to website, resources, etc.

    ### (indicates Press Release is finished)

    If sending to a newspaper or a TV station (by email or regular mail), send to the reporter or editor who covers the area you are targeting.
     

    • Sample Press Release - General

      FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  Date

      CONTACT: Name, phone number 

      With Proper Safe Sleep Steps, Preventable Infant Deaths Can Be Avoided

      City, State - Sleep-related infant deaths are Michigan's leading type of death for infants aged 1-12 months old1 with suffocation being the most common cause. Statewide, 1.3 sleep-related infant deaths occur per 1,000 live births.2 In 2021, 158 Michigan babies died, or more than two babies every week, due to sudden unexpected infant deaths.2 [UPDATE STATS ACCORDINGLY]

      Michigan babies have suffocated while sleeping in adult beds, sharing a bed with an adult or child, sleeping on furniture, and sleeping with pillows, cushions, and blankets. In accordance with the American Academy of Pediatrics, parents and caregivers should be encouraged to follow these basic infant safe sleep recommendations to protect babies from suffocation or accidents during nightly sleep and naps:

      • Place baby on the back to sleep. 
      • Place baby in a crib, bassinet or pack and play with a firm mattress covered only with a tightly fitted sheet. The sleep surface should be flat. 
      • Keep baby's sleep space clutter free—no pillows, quilts, comforters, stuffed toys, bumper pads, or other soft objects. 
      • Keep baby's sleep space near the caregiver's bed—share the room, not the bed. 
      • Keep baby's environment smoke-free and nicotine-free.  
      • Make sure everyone caring for baby knows these guidelines, including babysitters, friends, and family members.

      There are many ways to promote infant safe sleep. Visit www.michigan.gov/safesleep for more information. Clinics, doctors' offices and other professionals can order brochures, posters, decals, and other resource materials about safe sleep at www.healthymichigan.com.

      12018-2020 Michigan Resident Infant Death File, Division for Vital Records & Health Statistics, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services

      2 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Sudden Unexpected Infant Death Case Registry - 2010 to 2021, Michigan Public Health Institute, 2023

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    • Sample Press Release - Infant Safe Sleep Month

      FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  Date

      CONTACT: Name, phone number 

      October is Infant Safe Sleep Month in Michigan

      LANSING, Mich. - Governor Gretchen Whitmer declared October 2023 Infant Safe Sleep Month calling attention to the importance of preventing sleep-related infant deaths. To keep babies 0-12 months of age safe, while sleeping at night and during naps, parents and caregivers should follow the American Academy of Pediatrics guidelines:

      • Place baby on the back to sleep. 
      • Place baby in a crib, bassinet or pack and play with a firm mattress covered only with a tightly fitted sheet. The sleep surface should be flat. 
      • Keep baby's sleep space clutter free—no pillows, quilts, comforters, stuffed toys, bumper pads, or other soft objects. 
      • Keep baby's sleep space near the caregiver's bed—share the room, not the bed. 
      • Keep baby's environment smoke-free and nicotine-free.  
      • Make sure everyone caring for baby knows these guidelines, including babysitters, friends, and family members.

      From 2010 to 2021, 1,755 Michigan babies died due to sleeping in unsafe environments, such as on soft bedding or on an adult bed, couch or sofa chair, with toys or blankets, with another adult or child or on the stomach or side. In addition, significant health disparities exist in sleep-related infant deaths—black babies are dying at more than 3 times the rate of white babies.1

      [UPDATE STATS ACCORDINGLY]

      As part of the effort to prevent future sleep-related deaths, MDHHS is working with hospitals, local health departments and organizations statewide to raise awareness and promote system changes that result in Michigan babies surviving and thriving in their first year and beyond.

      Following the safe sleep guidelines can safe infant lives. To learn more about infant safe sleep, visit www.michigan.gov/safesleep. If you have any questions about infant safe sleep, please contact the Infant Safe Sleep Program at MDHHS-InfantSafeSleep@michigan.gov.

      1Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Sudden Unexpected Infant Death Case Registry - 2010 to 2021, Michigan Public Health Institute, 2023

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