Evaluation of Community Baby Showers to Promote Safe Sleep


  • Carolyn R Ahlers-Schmidt University of Kansas Medical Center:KU School of Medicine-Wichita, 1010 North Kansas, Wichita, KS 67214-3199, USA.
  • Christy Schunn
  • Millicent Dempsey
  • Sheila Blackmon




sleep, infant mortality, sudden infant death, African Americans, infant equipment


Background. In recent years, Kansas has ranked 40th among all states for worst infant mortality rates. For African American infant mortality, Kansas had the highest rate in the nation. Because of these statistics, initiatives have been implemented to reduce these rates by the KIDS Network, in partnership with the Black Nurses Association and the National Association of Hispanic Nurses. The purpose was to describe participants’ knowledge and intentions regarding safe sleep following a Community Baby Shower. Methods. The Community Baby Shower was targeted to African American women via black churches, physician offices, clinics, black sororities, word of mouth, radio, and print. All Baby Shower participants were asked to complete a brief survey following the shower. Results. The majority were African American (61%) with a high school diploma or less schooling (63%). Nearly all (97%) planned to place their baby supine for sleep. However, less than half (47%) planned to have the baby sleep in the parents’ room in a separate crib. Attendees exhibited high levels of safe sleep knowledge, stated intentions to utilize most safe sleep recommendations, and reported babies would have slept in unsafe environments without the portable crib. Conclusions. Our Baby Showers were attended by the target audience, who exhibited high levels of safe sleep knowledge, and stated intentions to utilize most safe sleep recommendations following the Shower. However, some participants were resistant to following at least some of the recommendations. Additional venues and other educational strategies may be needed to maximize the uptake of these recommendations.


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How to Cite

Ahlers-Schmidt, C. R., Schunn, C., Dempsey, M., & Blackmon, S. (2014). Evaluation of Community Baby Showers to Promote Safe Sleep. Kansas Journal of Medicine, 7(1), 1–5. https://doi.org/10.17161/kjm.v7i1.11476



Original Research