Sudden death rates for babies in Northland have halved but Maori infants still make up more than 90 per cent of overall deaths.

In a bid to reduce the number of babies suffocating in bed with their parents, the government is to fund pēpi pods, which allow for safe bed sharing.

Health Minister Jonathan Coleman has announced plastic pēpi pods would be rolled out nationally but could not confirm whether wahakura would be too.

How smoking and bed-sharing increases risk factors for SUDI

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New health targets focused on healthy mums and babies

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Government support sleeping pods for low income families.

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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.