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32 Deaths Connected To Infant Sleeper, Says Consumer Reports

Fisher-Price's Rock ‘n Play infant sleeper.
Fisher-Price's Rock ‘n Play infant sleeper. Photo Credit: Consumer Product Safety Commission

Pediatricians are calling on Fisher-Price to recall a device designed to help infants sleep after it was connected to the death of nearly three dozen children over the past decade.

Fisher-Price’s Rock ’n Play Sleeper should be recalled “immediately,” the American Academy of Pediatrics said this week, citing a Consumer Reports story that determined that 32 infant deaths were tied to the device. Fisher-Price reported last week that 10 infants had died while using the sleeper and further investigation determined that number was deflated.

Kyle Yasuda, the president of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) said that “this product is deadly and should be recalled immediately,” in a statement.

"The Rock 'n Play inclined sleeper should be removed from the market immediately. It does not meet the AAP's recommendations for a safe sleep environment for any baby. Infants should always sleep on their back, on a separate, flat and firm sleep surface without any bumpers or bedding," Rachel Moon, chair of the AAP Task Force on SIDS, added.

On April 5, the federal government and Fisher-Price issued a warning about the product, which does not align with the recommendations of medical experts in regards to how babies should be positioned.

The warning states that parents should stop using the product when infants turn 3 months old or begins showing the ability to roll over. According to the report, Fisher-Price confirmed to Consumer Reports that the company is aware of 32 fatalities since 2009, when the Rock ’n Play Sleeper was first put on shelves.

However, Fisher-Price told Consumer Reports that “the company does not believe that ‘any deaths have been caused by the product,’ citing ‘the many situations where a medical/health condition was identified as the cause of death, and/or those in which the product was clearly used in a manner contrary to the safety warnings and instructions.’”

According to Consumer Reports, their “review of the data shows that certain cases did have contributing factors such as illness or additional bedding, the number of incidents associated with the Rock ’n Play Sleeper, combined with long-standing expert medical advice that babies should sleep on firm, flat surfaces, raises serious safety concerns about the product.”

“Based on the deaths and injuries associated with the Fisher-Price Rock ’n Play, the product clearly puts infants’ safety at risk and should be recalled immediately,” William Wallace, a senior policy analyst at Consumer Reports stated. “All other inclined sleepers should be investigated by the Consumer Product Safety Commission. These products conflict with American Academy of Pediatrics’ safe sleep recommendations, and manufacturers should pull them off the market.”

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