Policy Implementation

Maine Safe Sleep Kit Program

State/Jurisdiction: Maine
Setting: Clinical
Population: Infant
Topic Area: Access to Quality Healthcare Injury Prevention & Hospitalization
NPMs: NPM 5: Safe Sleep

In Maine between the years 2014 and 2018, an average of ten Maine infants per year died due to SIDS/SUID. Infant sleep position, sleep surface, and sleep location are associated with the risk of SIDS/SUID and other sleep-related infant deaths. To reduce sleep-related infant deaths, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends all infants be placed to sleep on their backs, alone, on a separate firm surface, and with no soft objects in the sleep area. The "Maine Safe Sleep Kit Program" policy all families, regardless of racial/ethnic background or financial capacity, access to education and a safe sleep kit which consists of a cribette, a fitted sheet and a sleep sack. The goal of this policy is to decrease SIDS by increasing access to safe sleeping environments for infants. The key populations impacted by this Policy are infants and their families. The intent of this Policy is to increase the ability for all families to provide their infant with a safe place to sleep. In June of 2019 only five Maine birthing hospitals were certified by Cribs for Kids after years of trying to work with the 21 who were not certified. In August of 2019, the Maine DHHS Commissioner requested that all of Maine’s 26 birthing hospitals become Cribs for Kids certified at the bronze level or higher. (Maine is now down to 25 birthing hospitals as one closed after the 2019 request). One of the requirements to being Safe Sleep Certified at the gold level is the hospital must use or distribute wearable blankets and provide a safety-approved sleep alternative to at risk parents. The birthing hospitals shared that this was a barrier due to cost.

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Implementation Handout

Maine CDC, Department of Health and Human Services
Maryann Harakall

Practice Website