Bennet-Backed Bill to Better Understand Sudden Unexpected Deaths of Children Heading to President’s Desk

Bipartisan Bill will Improve Response, Training, Education

Washington, D.C. -- A bill cosponsored by Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet to help medical personnel better understand and respond to sudden unexpected deaths of children has passed both the House and the Senate and will head to the President's desk today. The bill establishes uniform protocols for collecting information on infant and child deaths and provides for better training for law enforcement and medical personnel.

"The unexpected death of a child is an unimaginably painful loss that has affected far too many families," Bennet said. "This bill will not only raise awareness of sudden unexpected deaths of children for law enforcement and medical personnel, but also help gather the research and understanding we need to prevent these tragedies in the future."

The Sudden Unexpected Death Data Enhancement and Awareness Act will help address the more than 25,000 stillbirths and sudden, unexpected deaths of infants and children that occur every year. It requires the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to establish uniform protocols for death scene investigations and autopsies surrounding sudden, unexpected deaths of infants and children. It also supports better training for medical personnel that respond to these types of incidents.

The bill also requires the CDC to set national reporting standards for state health departments to follow to help disseminate consistent information to law enforcement, medical researchers, and health care providers.

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