State News
5:27 pm
Fri January 4, 2013

Child Death Committee Wants To Review All Deaths, Not Just Some

A state committee that reviews child deaths is asking the Florida Legislature for broader review powers. That request and other recommendations for preventing child deaths are in an annual report it just released.

For the thirteenth year in a row, the leading causes of preventable death among children in Florida are drowning and sleeping with babies. That’s according to the report from the Statewide Child Abuse Death Review Committee.

Chairman Terry Thomas says, the committee reviews deaths that the Department of Children and Families verifies as neglect or abuse. But, he says, it should be reviewing all child deaths to make the best recommendations.

“We reviewed 126 deaths of children, and that is a minuscule number of the children that died in Florida," he said.

Cases that aren’t counted under the current tracking system include drownings that aren’t verified as neglect.

The committee is also recommending more education for new parents on how to prevent accidental deaths.