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Houlton Regional Hospital to hold walk for SIDS awareness

HOULTON, Maine — The Houlton Regional Hospital will host a community walk at 3 p.m. on Saturday in Riverfront Park to raise awareness for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.

October is SIDS awareness month, among several other awareness campaigns, and to raise awareness for the cause the group is holding the inaugural “Breath of Life Stroll” to engage in community outreach programs.

“The rate of sudden infant deaths has declined since the 1990s, but we still don’t know what causes them,” said Jayme Hovey, a registered nurse at the hospital. “What we do know are the measures one can take to prevent them to keep babies safe.”

The idea to hold a community walk first arose back in 2016 when the hospital became “safe sleep certified” at the silver level through the Cribs for Kids campaign, Hovey said.

For the last few years, hospital staff have worked to attain the gold level, but COVID-19 interfered with that because they couldn’t fulfill the required community outreach portion, she said.

“The nurses on LDRP are all in, but we want to include the rest of the hospital to have good representation and also take the opportunity to educate the community on infant safe sleep practices, Hovey said.

The walk will be held along the Riverfront Park trail system.

Donations will be accepted for the walk. Hovey stated that every $60 that is generated can be used to purchase a portable crib for families in the local community.

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