The following pool of research seeks to inform readers about SUDI so that the community is best informed about its associated risk factors.

This research effectively informs our key messaging around SUDI, which is disseminated to a range of stakeholders including whānau, communities and health professionals.

Sudden Unexpected Death in Infancy

Ministry of Health


If you choose to sleep in bed with your baby, put them in their own baby bed beside you – for example, a pēpi-pod or wahakura.

NZ Child and Youth Mortality Review Committee, 9th Data Report, 2008-2012

NZ Mortality Review Data Group


This is the 9th Data Report released by the CYMRC. It predominantly reports on data from 2008 to 2012, with some tables and figures for 2002-2012, and some for the time period 1979-2012. These data are from the Mortality Review Database, which contains information on all deaths in children and young people aged 28 days to 24 years who died in New Zealand from 2002 to the present.

SIDS prevention: 3000 lives saved but we can do better

Edwin A Mitchell, Peter S Blair


Mortality from sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) has decreased substantially from the late 1980s. This has been attributed to the change in infant sleep position initially from prone (front) to side and then to predominantly supine (back). We calculate that this has saved over 3000 lives. However, we argue that we could save more infant lives, if more focus was given to the risks observed from parents sleeping in the same bed as their babies.

Otolaryngological aspects of sudden infant death syndrome

Tal Marom, Udi Cinamon, Paul F. Castellanos, Marta C. Cohen


Introduction: Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is characterised by the sudden death of an apparently otherwise healthy infant, typically during sleep, and with no obvious case after a thorough post-mortem and scene death examination. 

Sudden unexpected infant death—no more “stunned amazement”

Nick Baker


The last 20 years have seen the dramatic reduction in the toll from Sudden Unexpected Death in Infancy (SUDI) in New Zealand from 200 to 60 deaths per annum. The reduction in mortality stems largely from the recognition that placing babies to sleep on their backs reduced the risk of death, as was highlighted in the New Zealand case control study in 1992. It can be calculated that approximately 3000 infants have survived who would otherwise have died over these 20 years.

Why Māori women continue to smoke while pregnant

Marewa Glover, Anette Kira


Aim: To investigate why some Māori women continue smoking during pregnancy.

Methods: An exploratory qualitative study was conducted with 60 pregnant Māori women aged from 17–43. A questionnaire was used to guide the interviews. Responses were categorised using Te Whare Tapa Wha (the four-sided house), an Indigenous theoretical framework

Breastfeeding and Reduced Risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome: A Meta-analysis

Fern R. Hauck, John M. D. Thompson, Kawai O. Tanabe, Rachel Y. Moon and Mechtild M. Vennemann


Benefits of breast feeding include lower risk of post neonatal mortality. However, it is unclear whether breastfeeding specifically lowers sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) risk, because study results have been conflicting.