South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue

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Awards joy for fire service funded midwife safety scheme

A fire service funded scheme to educate thousands of mums-to-be about home safety has been recognized with two top awards.

The ‘Barnsley Babies’ initiative won the Governor’s Award and Partnership Working Award at Barnsley Hospital’s Heart Awards, which celebrate the hard work and dedication of Barnsley Hospital staff and volunteers.

Following a recent successful trial in the Barnsley area, maternity units across South Yorkshire now hand out specially designed thermometers to expectant parents.

As well as telling parents when their baby’s room is at the correct temperature, the devices also display important messages about topics including home fire safety and smoke free homes. Cigarettes are a major cause of house fires and smoking in pregnancy is known to increase the risk of miscarriage, still and premature birth and other complications.

The project was awarded £23,500 under South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Authority’s funding scheme, the Stronger Safer Communities Reserve.

Joanne Poskitt, Specialist Midwife in Drug and Alcohol Use at Barnsley Hospital, said: “We work closely with the fire service already as it is well documented that there are links between a smoking home and sudden infant death or meningitis.

“The thermometers are a practical and simple tool which will help parents provide a safe sleeping environment for baby, information on creating a smoke free home and offer the opportunity for a free home safety check. We have already been handing out the thermometers in Barnsley and is now being extended to the whole of South Yorkshire.”

This content was last updated on June 21st, 2016