Kim Pegula, Bills Women’s Association help promote safe sleep at Oishei Children’s Hospital


BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – Bills fans are dreaming big for a great football season, and in the meantime, some of the Bills leadership has been wishing ‘sweet dreams’ to the newest fans.

Kim Pegula and the Bills Women’s Association spent Friday morning at Oishei Children’s Hospital making special deliveries of “Fantennial” sleep sacks to the the families of newborns.

It’s a nice gift to help celebrate Bills fans’ team pride and promote safe sleeping habits.

“If we can just save one infant life through this campaign, it will be an amazing feat,” said Dianne Charsha, Chief Nurse & Clinical Operations Officer at Oishei Children’s Hospital.

Kaleida Health has been taking part in an ongoing campaign to educate families about safe sleep to help prevent Sudden Unexpected Infant Death Syndrome. 90 babies died from SUIDS in New York State last year, hospital officials said.

“Safe sleep is a set of practices making sure that babies are alone in their crib — nothing’s with them like toys or bumpers or other things that can potentially interfere with the infant’s airway, that they are on their backs and that they are actually in a crib,” Charsha explained.

The sleep sacks Pegula and the Bills Women’s Association delivered Friday help protect infants airways because they are wearable blankets, keeping material away from the baby’s face.

After families received sleep sacks during this special visit, staff at the hospital showed them how to use them.

Many babies find comfort in the sleep sacks because they make them feel warm and cozy, like they would be in the womb. Parents also find it easier to use the special Halo sleep sacks, with zippers and velcro, than trying to bundle baby with a traditional swaddle blanket.

Charsha said sleep sacks should be worn for bed time until infants are a year old. While the newborn sleep sacks which were handed out Friday are intended to be used only until baby can begin to roll, and therefore can no longer be safely swaddled at night, there are other sleep sacks without swaddling elements for older babies.

Some sleep sacks even have an open bottom, so baby’s can safely stand in them in their cribs, without having the danger of a blanket in their sleep space that could end up blocking their airway.

The newborn sleep sacks are part of an ongoing safe sleep campaign for Kaleida Health and will continue to be given to patients’ families while supplies last.

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