Sam Hanke, left, and John Hutton, are pediatricians at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center. At Hanke's suggestion and guidance, Hutton wrote a new book on safe sleep guidelines for parents. (Photo by A. Saker)
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Infant Mortality Pt. II: A friend & a book about safe sleep help a local dad turn the page on loss

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CINCINNATI - The news flashed one day around Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center: The chief resident, a new father, fell asleep on the couch at home--his infant Charlie on his chest-- and awakened to discover that the baby, just three weeks old, was dead.

Pediatric resident John Hutton felt sick to hear of the tragedy. Twenty-first century medicine and nutrition has tilted the overall odds for most babies. Campaigns to improve care, such as always putting a baby on its back for sleep, have saved more lives. But many mysteries remain, including the phenomenon of sudden unexplained infant death. And now, to know his friend the chief resident, Sam Hanke, had endured such a loss?

Infant mortality rates for Cincinnati and parts of Northern Kentucky are well above the national average. One local dad lost his baby son at just three weeks old. He and his wife turned the tragedy into resources for other parents.

In part two or our look at infant mortality, learn about how tragedy helped a father turn the page, taking a painful experience and translating it into a foundation and book to help other parents.

Become a WCPO Insider to read the whole story.


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