Little progress in preventing sudden infant deaths since last report: BC coroner
A crib is shown in this undated image from shutterstock.com. (Anna Jurkovska)
VICTORIA - There's been no change in the number of babies dying in their sleep five years after British Columbia's coroners' services made recommendations to stem the trend.
The service says its death review panel found about 23 infants under the age of one die unexpectedly while sleeping each year.
The panel studied 141 sleep-related sudden infant deaths between 2013 and 2018 and found infants continue to die under the same circumstances identified by an earlier panel that looked at the same types of deaths between 2008 and 2012.
The panel report says the deaths disproportionately affect vulnerable young families with risk factors, such as exposure to tobacco, while a combination of sleep positions and health issues may increase the danger.
The panel calls for additional support from public-health nurses and other trained providers for expectant women and families with infants, and consistent, accessible messages related to infant sleep practices.
It also recommends a provincial approach to the review of infant deaths, including expanded investigative protocols.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published on Nov. 19, 2019.