How you can keep your newborn safe.
Friday, a woman abducted a 1-day-old baby from a hospital by smuggling the infant out in a duffel bag, even though the baby was wearing a device designed to set off an alarm when removed from the maternity unit. Thankfully, the kidnapper was apprehended an hour later and the baby was reunited with the parents.
Before baby's birth:
1. Investigate security procedures at the facility where you plan to give birth to your baby.
2. Request a copy of the facility's written guidelines for security procedures in the maternity ward.
After baby's birth:
1. Never leave your infant alone in the room.
2. Place baby's bassinet on the side of your bed that is opposite from the door to allow you to see who is entering the room.
3. Don't give your infant to anyone without properly verified hospital identification. Question unfamiliar persons entering your room or inquiring about your infant—even if they are in hospital attire or seem to have a reason for being there. Alert the nurses' station immediately.
4. Determine where your infant will be when taken for tests, and how long the tests will take. Find out who has authorized the tests. If you are uncomfortable with anyone who requests to take your baby or unable to clarify what testing is being done or why your baby is being taken from your room, it is appropriate to go with your baby to observe the procedure.
After you go home:
1. Consider the risk you may be taking when permitting your infant's birth announcement to be published in the newspaper. Birth announcements should never include the family's home address.
2. The use of outdoor decorations to announce the infant's arrival such as Mylar balloons, large floral wreaths, wooden storks, and other lawn ornaments is not recommended.
If you're already a Mom, were you nervous about infant abduction after you gave birth?