Newborn Babies at SwedishAmerican Celebrate American Heart Month With Red Knit Hats

Volunteers from the American Heart Association and SwedishAmerican Hospital are celebrating American Heart Month by giving away free red knit hats to all babies born at SwedishAmerican in February. The Little Hats, Big Hearts™ project is an initiative to raise awareness of heart disease, the number one killer of Americans, and congenital heart defects, the most common type of birth defect in the country and the leading killer of infants with birth defects.

Volunteers from across the county and country have knitted hundreds of hats that will be given to all babies born at SwedishAmerican Hospital during the month of February. SwedishAmerican is the only hospital in Rockford to participate in the project this year.

Congenital heart defects (CHD) affect approximately 40,000 babies born in the country each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. CHD results when a mishap occurs during heart development soon after conception and often before the mother is aware that she is pregnant. Additionally, it affects approximately one in every 125 babies every year in the United States alone.

The American Heart Association is second, only to the federal government, in funding cardiovascular and stroke research, including congenital heart defects. For more information on Little Hats Big Hearts visit www.heart.org/LittleHatsBigHearts.