The National Conference of State Legislatures keeps an extensive listing of legislation pertaining to shaken baby syndrome prevention and education.
State Statutes Regarding Shaken Baby Syndrome
Many states are taking a proactive stance in recent years regarding the prevention of shaken baby syndrome. Below are some examples of states who are working toward federal legislation. It is difficult to track legislation in all fifty states, if you have information on legislation in your state or in others, please e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ohio 127th General Assembly (2007-2008) (Amended Senate Bill Number 144)
To enact sections 3701.63, 3701.64, and 5101.135 of the Revised Code to require the Director of Health to establish the Shaken Baby Syndrome Education Program and to require the Department of Job and Family Services to record in the statewide automated child welfare information system whether a reported case of child abuse involved shaken baby syndrome.
117th General Assembly (2007-2008)
A55, R93, S518
An act to amend the code of laws of South Carolina, 1976, by adding section 44-37-50 so as to provide that a hospital must make available to the parents of a newborn baby a video presentation on the dangers of shaking infants and information on the importance of infant CPR and that the hospital must request that the maternity patient, father, or primary caregiver view the video, to provide that the Director of the Department of Health and Environmental Control shall review all submitted videos and shall approve acceptable videos, to provide that the video presentation must be made available to childcare facilities and childcare providers and that childcare facilities must include this video presentation in the training of the facility's caregivers, to provide that the department must make the video available to any interested person at cost, to provide that the department shall establish a protocol for health care providers to educate parents or primary caregivers about the dangers of shaking infants and young children, to provide that the department shall request pediatric health care providers to review these dangers with parents or caregivers associated with shaking infants at well-baby visits, and to provide that the Department of Social Services shall make the video and information on infant CPR available to adopting parents and shall request these parents to view the video.
November 16, 2006
Governor Mitt Romney signed a comprehensive measure to prevent shaken baby syndrome in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The bill is renamed Chapter 356 of the Act of 2006. Because it was enacted as emergency legislation, the bill takes effect immediately. It amends a section of the Massachusetts General Laws related to the Department of Public Health.
The bill is the result of a highly collaborative effort among private, non profit, and public agency organizations and individuals, all seeking to reduce death and disability due to inflicted traumatic brain injury and abusive head trauma in infants and young children.
The measure directs the Massachusetts Department of Public Health to collaborate with the Department of Social Services and the Massachusetts Children's Trust Fund and other private and public agencies to develop and implement a state-wide SBS prevention initiative. The initiative will include a hospital based program for parents of newborns; education and training programs for parents, caregivers, and professionals; support for victims of shaken baby syndrome and their families; and the creation of a surveillance and data collection program to measure the incidence of SBS and traumatic brain injury in infants and children in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The legislation authorizes the Commonwealth's Department of Public Health to promulgate rules and regulations to implement the bill. It also creates a statewide advisory group.
New York passed Bill A08314, which requires all child care providers in New York to receive training on shaken baby syndrome. Chapter 416, section 390-a, of the social services law of 2000 was amended to mandate that all child day care providers be educated and informed on the identification, diagnosis and prevention of shaken baby syndrome. This education is to be added to the training providers already receive on early childhood development, nutrition and statues and regulations toward safety issues.
The requirements for day care centers in Texas are found in chapter 42, sections 42.0421 (b) and 42.0421 (c) of Texas Human Resource Code. This code states that employees of licensed day care centers, group day care homes and registered family homes providing day care for children under 24 months must receive one hour of annual in-service training on recognizing and preventing shaken baby syndrome, preventing sudden infant death syndrome and understanding early childhood brain development.
Utah's administrative code number R430-100-6, section 5 requires all centers providing infant care to receive in-service training on preventing shaken baby syndrome, preventing sudden infant death syndrome, coping with crying babies and the development of the brain. The statute does not specify how many hours should be dedicated to this particular training, although it does require that all caregivers receive at least 20 hours of documented in-service training per year and that this training be conducted in person.
Enactment of this is an important step in the goal of prevention through education. It is imperative to train and educate day care providers on the dangers of shaking children as well as what instigates the shaking. The reasoning for this education is two fold. First, providers are continuously faced with and deal with fussy babies and inconsolable crying. These situations tend to lead to the shaking of children. Second, providers form relationships with the child and his/her parents, thereby giving them an opportunity to watch for the signs of abuse and to educate the parents they associate with about shaken baby syndrome.
Minnesota statute requiring training for daycare providers and foster care providers who care for infants.
245A.144 Training on risk of sudden infant death syndrome and shaken baby syndrome.
(a) License holders must document that before staff persons, caregivers, and helper’s assist in the care of infants, they receive training on reducing the risk of sudden infant death syndrome and shaken baby syndrome. The training on reducing the risk of sudden infant death syndrome and shaken baby syndrome may be provided as:
- (1) Orientation training to child care center staff under Minnesota Rules, part 9503.0035, subpart 1, and to child foster care providers, who care for infants, under Minnesota Rules, part 2960.3070, subpart 1;
- (2) Initial training to family and group family child care providers under Minnesota Rules, part 9502.0385, subpart 2;
- (3) In-service training to child care center staff under Minnesota Rules, part 9503.0035, subpart 4, and to child foster care providers, who care for infants, under Minnesota Rules, part 2960.3070, subpart 2; or
- (4) Ongoing training to family and group family child care providers under Minnesota Rules, part 9502.0385, subpart 3.
(b) Training required under this section must be at least one hour in length and must be completed at least once every five years. At a minimum, the training must address the risk factors related to sudden infant death syndrome and shaken baby syndrome, means of reducing the risk of sudden infant death syndrome and shaken baby syndrome in childcare, and license holder communication with parents regarding reducing the risk of sudden infant death syndrome and shaken baby syndrome.
(c) Training for family and group family child care providers must be approved by the county licensing agency according to Minnesota Rules, part 9502.0385.
(d) Training for child foster care providers must be approved by the county licensing agency and fulfills, in part, training required under Minnesota Rules, part 2960.3070. 245A.1445 Dangers of shaking infants and young children. The commissioner shall make available for viewing by all licensed and legal non-licensed childcare providers a video presentation on the dangers associated with shaking infants and young children. The video presentation shall be part of the initial and annual training of licensed childcare providers. Legal non-licensed childcare providers may participate at their option in a video presentation session offered under this section. The commissioner shall provide to childcare providers and interested individuals, at cost, copies of a video approved by the commissioner of health under section 144.574 on the dangers associated with shaking infants and young children.