Healthy Columbia, a community-driven initiative under the fiscal sponsorship of CHI St. Joseph Children’s Health, is proud to announce the launch of Columbia’s Baby Box Program for expecting parents throughout the Borough. The program provides eligible parents with a safe place for infants to sleep (a cardboard bassinet with a firm mattress and fitted sheet), onesies, bibs, wash cloths, socks, a sleep sack, burp cloths, and parent education about safe sleep.
“The goal of this program is to offer a combination of face-to-face and technology-based parent education and some basic essentials to give the baby a healthy start within the first few weeks of life,” said Philip Goropoulos, president of CHI St. Joseph Children’s Health. “As an organization dedicated to improving the health and well-being of children, we’re proud to provide access to this program for families in this community.”
The Baby Box concept originally began in the 1930’s in Finland as a way to reduce sleep-related infant deaths. The impact of the Baby Box concept was recently researched by Temple University Hospital. The University’s study was conducted from Jan. 1, 2015 to Nov. 15, 2016, and found that face-to-face sleep education and providing a baby box with a firm mattress and fitted sheet reduced the rate of bed-sharing by 25 percent in the first eight days of the baby’s life. For exclusively breastfed infants, a population at increased risk of bed-sharing, bed-sharing was reduced by 50 percent.
“The most critical part of this program is the educational component,” said Kelsey Miller, a program manager with CHI St. Joseph Children’s Health who works closely on initiatives within the Columbia, PA community. “Baby Boxes provide an opportunity for us to connect with families and share critical information about safe sleep practices with their infant.”
Baby Boxes are now available for expecting families within the 17512 zip code. Families interested in receiving a Baby Box should contact Healthy Columbia at CHI St. Joseph Children’s Health at 717-397-7625 or visit www.healthycolumbiapa.org. The program is limited to one Baby Box per child.
About CHI St. Joseph Children’s Health
A part of Catholic Health Initiatives, CHI St. Joseph Children’s Health is a community-based organization dedicated to the health and well-being of children and families in the Lancaster community. The organization works in collaboration with community partners to assure access to appropriate, quality health services and benefits for every child in the Lancaster community. This mission in children’s health includes multiple efforts, programs and services committed to improving the health of children and families throughout the Lancaster community. To learn more about CHI St. Joseph Children’s Health, visit www.CHIstjosephchildrenshealth.org.