safe sleep photo

Safe Sleep

Approximately 3,500 infants die of sleep-related deaths, including sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) and accidental suffocation and strangulation in bed.[1] Of the infant deaths reviewed by Child Death Review Teams in Pennsylvania, 59 (18.8%) of the 314 reviewed deaths from 2020 were sudden unexpected infant death (SUID) related cases. The causes of death for the SUID-related cases include pending, unknown/undetermined, unintentional asphyxia, and SIDS. In Pennsylvania, black or African American infants die of SUID at more than twice the rate of white infants.[2]

Of the 59 SUID cases, 36 (61.0%) occurred when the child was placed to sleep in an unsafe sleep location and in 22 of the 36 cases the unsafe sleep location was an adult bed. In a majority of the SUID related deaths (61.0%) a safe sleep environment was available at the time of the death.2

[1] Evidence Base for 2022 Updated Recommendations for a Safe Infant Sleeping Environment to Reduce the Risk of Sleep-Related Infant Deaths | Pediatrics | American Academy of Pediatrics (

[2] 2020 Child Death Review Annual Report (

PA PQC Safe Sleep Workgroup

The PA PQC would like to extend a sincere thank you to the experts and stakeholders that came together January through April 2023 to create the PA PQC Safe Sleep driver diagram, metrics, and measures. The workgroup was made up of 23 individuals, representing stakeholders and experts from 15 different organizations, as well as 3 patient voice representatives. The workgroup met four times during that time period and provided direction and guidance to the PA PQC team in the finalization of the Safe Sleep driver diagram. 

The PA PQC Safe Sleep workgroup members included, in no particular order: James Cook, MD, Director of Newborn Services, Geisinger; Michael Goodstein, MD, Director of Newborn Services, WellSpan Health & AAP Task Force on SIDS; Marilyn Stringer, PhD, WHNP, FAAN, Professor Emerita, U Penn School of Nursing & PA Safe Sleep; Jessica Lazzeri, MSN, RN, NEA-BC, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania & PA Safe Sleep; Tara Trego, MEd, Director, Bureau of Family Health, Pennsylvania Department of Health; Elizabeth Dunlevey, Program Administrator, Bureau of Family Health, Pennsylvania Department of Health; Christina Phillips, MPA, Public Health Program Administrator, Child Fatality Review and Prevention Program; Jessica Corey, MSW, Director of Family Support Programs, Maternity Care Coalition; Erich Batra, MD, Penn State Hershey & Head of PA AAP section of Child Death Review; Judy Bannon, CEO and Founder, Cribs for Kids; Eileen Tyrala, MD, Medical Director, Cribs for Kids, and Infant Safe Sleep Comittee of the PA AAP; Devon George, MSN, RN, Chief Programs Officer, Cribs for Kids; David Paul, MD, Chair of Pediatrics, Christiana Care; Rachel Berger, MD, MPH, Professor of Pediatrics, Univeristy of Pittsburgh; Stacey Kallem, MD, MSHP, Director of Division of Maternal, Child, and Family Health, Philadelphia DOH; Annette Frazier, Safe Sleep Program Manager, Philadelphia DOH; Annette Myarick, PA AAP; Adriane Burgess, PhD, RNC-OB, CCE, CNE, C-ONQS, CPHQ, PA AWHONN; Stacie Massett, WellSpan, PA AWHONN; Vivian Petticord, DNP, RNC, CNL, Director Women's Health Service Line, UPMC Magee Women's Hospital; Ronnda Montgomery; Frederick Seymour; and Marcos Lugo.