By reducing smoking rates and bed-sharing with newborn babies, the Government says it can drastically reduce the number of sudden infant deaths in less than a decade.

Health Minister Jonathan Coleman has announced a new goal to reduce the number of babies who die each year due to Sudden Unexpected Death in Infancy (SUDI), by 86 per cent within eight years.

By reducing the overall rate of SUDI by 86 per cent and 94 per cent for Maori by 2025, the number of SUDI deaths would be reduced from 44 to six.

The SUDI rate is about 0.7 in every 1,000 babies born, and 1.59 for every 1,000 Maori babies born. The goal was to get that rate down to 0.1 in every 1000 births by 2025.

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