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Warning over dangers of baby face masks

05 August 2020

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A mask typical of those marketed as being for babies.

Parents and carers are being warned of the risk of suffocation from 'cute' baby coverings being promoted online.

The Bury, Rochdale and Oldham Child Death Overview Panel has issued a warning over the dangers of the new 'cute' face coverings following advice from The Lullaby Trust about the risk of suffocation they present to babies.

The Lullaby Trust raises awareness of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) and provides expert advice on safer sleep for babies. The trust urges parents to avoid using face coverings on babies.

Government has made wearing face coverings mandatory on public transport, in shops, supermarkets and in public places from Friday, 24 July 2020 with a fine of up to £100 for non-compliance. However, Public Health England is clear that this policy does not apply to children under the age of 3, with discretionary use of face coverings for children under 11 years of age.

'I would strongly advise parents not to use any form of face covering for their baby'

Dr Rebecca Fletcher, chair of Bury, Rochdale and Oldham Child Death Overview Panel, said: "It is extremely dangerous to cover a baby's mouth and nose and the design of the 'cute' baby face coverings that have been brought to our attention look like they would greatly increase the risk of suffocation. I would strongly advise parents not to use any form of face covering for their baby. If any parent has concerns or needs advice they should contact their community midwife or health visitor."