Shaken Baby Syndrome prevention

Shaken Baby Syndrome prevention

Shaken Baby Syndrome prevention

Introduction

Shaken Baby Syndrome occurs when a child under four years of age is shaken violently, typically by a parent or carer, causing brain damage and possibly death. The most common trigger for this is when a child cries. This is also known as Abusive Head Trauma. Around 18-25% of under-ones shaken this way will die from their injuries, while up to 80% of survivors will be left with cognitive and neurological impairments and problems with their hearing and sight.

2020 Award

Suzanne Smith (CF 2016) is a child protection expert and the founder of ICON, the first ever co-ordinated UK programme aimed at helping parents and carers to cope with a crying baby, thereby preventing cases of Shaken Baby Syndrome. Today ICON has spread to 15 counties in the UK, including Lancashire, Gloucestershire, Hampshire, Sussex and Yorkshire. Suzanne’s aim is to fully embed ICON within health and social care delivery across the whole of the UK, supported by a firm evaluation programme and professional management.

Suzanne has been awarded one of our Activate grants to expand ICON. As part of NHS England’s Covid-19 emergency planning arrangements, part of the ICON programme has been rolled out nationally to all maternity units, in recognition of the extra stress that families are put under during lockdown. The Activate award will contribute to an evaluation of the programme and continue an already successful social media campaign to reach men. Reaching men is important as 70% of babies who are shaken are shaken by men. In addition, the grant will support the recruitment of a co-ordinator to assist UK regions that have commissioned ICON and to maintain the integrity of the programme for maximum impact.

Suzanne’s Fellowship to the USA and Canada explored programmes that are successfully reducing the level of Abusive Head Trauma in infants.

2020 Award

Suzanne Smith (CF 2016) is a child protection expert and the founder of ICON, the first ever co-ordinated UK programme aimed at helping parents and carers to cope with a crying baby, thereby preventing cases of Shaken Baby Syndrome. Today ICON has spread to 15 counties in the UK, including Lancashire, Gloucestershire, Hampshire, Sussex and Yorkshire. Suzanne’s aim is to fully embed ICON within health and social care delivery across the whole of the UK, supported by a firm evaluation programme and professional management.

Suzanne has been awarded one of our Activate grants to expand ICON. As part of NHS England’s Covid-19 emergency planning arrangements, part of the ICON programme has been rolled out nationally to all maternity units, in recognition of the extra stress that families are put under during lockdown. The Activate award will contribute to an evaluation of the programme and continue an already successful social media campaign to reach men. Reaching men is important as 70% of babies who are shaken are shaken by men. In addition, the grant will support the recruitment of a co-ordinator to assist UK regions that have commissioned ICON and to maintain the integrity of the programme for maximum impact.

Suzanne’s Fellowship to the USA and Canada explored programmes that are successfully reducing the level of Abusive Head Trauma in infants.