March 18, 2013
Culture factor in infant deaths needs action
The group set up to fight Sudden Unexpected Death in Infancy among Māori is welcoming a new report from the Child and Youth Mortality Review Committee that calls for culturally appropriate services to be delivered to Māori and Pacific families.
Whakawhetu General Manager Kodi Hapi says the report Unintentional suffocation, foreign body inhalation and strangulation shows the rate of death in Māori and Pacific infants is significantly higher than for European babies.
She says front line staff working with whānau have a real opportunity to make a difference.
Whakawhetu and TAHA Well Pacific Mother and Infant Service have developed a simple four-step PEPE message telling whānau to put babies in their own baby bed in the same room as the caregiver, eliminate smoking, position baby on their back to sleep and encourage mums to breastfeed.
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