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Postpartum Nurses Honored for Playing a Pivotal Role in Introducing Safe Sleep to New Parents

Nurses on Postpartum played an important role in safe sleep education for parents, leading to Renown Children’s Hospital becoming the first hospital in the state to earn an honor from the National Safe Sleep Hospital Certification Program.

The maternal child staff on Postpartum initiated a Safe Sleep program for new parents – leading to Renown Children’s Hospital becoming the first hospital in the state to earn an honor from the National Safe Sleep Hospital Certification Program.

The education for new families begins at birth and extends through discharge by modeling the safe sleep behaviors throughout their stay. The nurses on postpartum use sleep sacks to demonstrate safe sleep behaviors. In addition, they educate about removing all objects from the bassinet that impede the safe sleep philosophy. According to Jen Timmons, RN, Manager, Postpartum, every year infants die in their sleep from SIDS and accidental suffocation.

“Renown feels a sense of obligation to educate our community to prevent these deaths from occurring,” she says. “We encourage our parents to continue the safe sleep practices by giving them a sleep sack to take home.”

In recognition for all of the hard work and efforts around safe sleep on postpartum, Renown Regional has received the National Safe Sleep Hospital Certification Program’s highest designation, a certified Safe Sleep Champion. Renown Children’s Hospital is the first hospital in the state be recognized by the National Safe Sleep Hospital Certification Program.

“We are honored to lead the way in safe sleep in our state by educating families on safe sleep environments for infants,” says Natalie Nicholson, MBA, MSN, RN, CNML, Director of Nursing, Renown Children’s Hospital. “This certification is an example of the excellent teamwork we have at Renown, as there were many employees involved with making this certification a reality.”

This certification requires a hospital to have a safe sleep policy in place and employees trained on the policy, offer education for parents, use sleep sacks instead of receiving blankets, provide community and media outreach on safe sleep, and keep a record of progress and successes.

“We understand that it can be overwhelming to have a new baby in the house, and with all the information coming at parents, we want to make sure we provide clear and simple guidance on safe sleep,” said Nicholson. “It’s important for caregivers to know what a safe sleep environment is – the baby is alone in a crib but sharing a room with the parents, on his or her back, and with no blankets, pillows, toys or loose bedding.”