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Evaluation of government's compaign to reduce risk of cot death

BMJ 1994; 309 doi: (Published 17 September 1994) Cite this as: BMJ 1994;309:703
  1. C M H Hiley,
  2. C Morley
  1. Department of Paediatrics, University of Cambridge, Box 116, Addenbrooke's Hospital, Cambridge CB2 2QQ
  1. Correspondence to: Dr Morley.
  • Accepted 18 May 1994

In December 1991 the Department of Health's “Back to Sleep” campaign advised that babies should not sleep on their front, be exposed to cigarette smoke, or be overheated.1 Since then cot deaths have halved, from 912 in 1991 to 456 in 1992.2 This has been attributed to the campaign,3 with little evidence that child care practice has in fact changed. This study compared the way mothers cared for their infants before and after the campaign.

Subjects, methods, and results

Questionnaires were sent to two randomly selected groups of 450 mothers of normal term babies born in Cambridge, Huntingdon, or Bury St Edmunds. The first group gave birth at least eight months before the campaign. The second group gave birth after the campaign and received the questionnaire when their baby was six months old. Tog values were calculated using …

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