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Sudden Infant Death Syndrome Program (SIDS) Fact Sheet

MO-07-0008 SIDS


  • Reduce the number of deaths due to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).
  • Help families and others deal with the tragedy of SIDS.


  • In 2012, SIDS was one of the top five leading causes of infant death (birth to one year of age) in California. 
  • In California in 2012, the African American (non-Hispanic) SIDS rate was almost five times that of both the White (non-Hispanic) and Hispanic SIDS rate.  

Program Activities 

  • Outreach campaign to educate parents, families, and child care providers on how to reduce the risk of SIDS. (e.g.  place baby on back to sleep, on a firm flat surface and without soft objects, toys or loose bedding for all naps and at night, no smoking around baby, avoid over bundling--baby needs to be kept warm not hot, baby needs regular check-ups and immunizations, and breastfeed your baby.) 
  • Targeted outreach campaign for African-American families.
  • Trainings for SIDS families so that they can help other SIDS families in dealing with grief.
  • Trainings for hospital staff, public health nurses, emergency responders, coroners, childcare providers, foster parents, and the general public on SIDS facts and dealing with the emotional impact of SIDS deaths.
  • Information to the public on risk reduction and the latest research concerning SIDS and its potential causes.

Who Benefits

  • All parents of infants benefit by knowing they can actually do something to reduce the risk of SIDS.
  • The SIDS risk reduction campaign known as “Back to Sleep” or “Safe to Sleep” has reduced the rate of SIDS deaths in California by 29 % from 1999 to 2012.

Who Provides Services

  • Parent volunteers, public health professionals, Local MCAH SIDS Coordinators, and Staff at California Sudden Infant Death Syndrome Program. Current SIDS Contractor is Regents of the University of California, San Francisco, School of Nursing. To locate assistance in your area, please see our MCAH Directors and Local Toll Free Numbers Listing.


  • Federal Title V MCH Block Grant Funds. California Department of Public Health, Maternal, Child and Adolescent Health (MCAH) Division administers the SIDS Program. Please see the SIDS Program for more information.
Last modified on: 5/19/2015 3:49 PM