SIDS: Agencies Crack Down on ‘Prevention’ Products
Officials at the FDA and the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) are taking steps to curb the marketing of products that claim to "reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome," the Washington Post reports. In the next week, the FDA is expected to send a letter to companies manufacturing products that claim they are designed to "help reduce SIDS." According to an FDA spokesperson, the letter will explain that such claims would lead to the products being considered "medical devices," and, therefore, they may be subject to approval by the federal government. In addition, the CPSC is expected to announce that it has halted the selling of four products -- mesh mattresses and covers and foam and vinyl mattress pads -- "because their marketing materials suggest, either implicitly or explicitly, that babies can be safely put to sleep on their stomachs." Although the cause of SIDS remains a mystery, the American Academy of Pediatrics since 1992 has been recommending that parents put their infants to sleep on their backs. Recently, the academy has taken "a strong stand" against products that claim they can reduce the risk of SIDS. Next week, the group will release a statement denouncing the products, saying that "such devices are not recommended, because none have been tested sufficiently to show efficacy or safety" (Mayer, 3/2).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.