If you’ve given birth or know someone who has, you may have noticed a common “thread” – the blanket wrapped around the newborn. The white blanket with blue and pink stripes has been used at Women & Infants Hospital and hospitals across the country for generations. It is one of the first things to touch the skin of thousands of newborns each year.
The cotton-blend blanket was created in the 1950s – a time when hospital births began to significantly outnumber homebirths. In the beginning, hospitals were using basic and drab cloths to swaddle babies; and it became apparent a comfy and cute baby blanket was needed. So, the iconic pink and blue-striped blanket was born.
The design was an instant favorite for hospitals because it’s gender-neutral, soft, and warm. It’s not too busy (distracting from the baby) and has multiple functions. Now, an estimated 1.5M of the so-called “Kuddle-Up” blankets are sold each year and the fabric has become a symbol of a baby born in the hospital versus at home.
Simply seeing this iconic symbol can evoke emotion because it has become so ingrained in our memories that we recognize it as the start of life’s most joyous stories. It connects us all - regardless of race, religion, sexual orientation, or socioeconomic background.
A hospital blanket, of all things, that has woven itself into the lives of all of us - past, present, and future.
For generations, Women & Infants Hospital has cared for parents and their families at pivotal moments in their lives. When Women & Infants Hospital's current labor and delivery suite opened 35 years ago, it was considered state-of-the-art. Since then, medical protocols and the medical needs of families-to-be have evolved considerably, and standards around provider efficiency have changed.
Put simply, a more technologically advanced, better-designed birth center is urgently needed for all women in Rhode Island.
Women & Infants Hospital is a leader and innovator in the fields of normal and high-risk obstetrics and neonatology, with over 80 percent of women from Southern New England choosing to give birth at Women & Infants Hospital. Women & Infants Hospital has a well-established referral relationship with providers, hospitals, and health systems across Southern New England. However, the existing facility no longer meets today’s architectural standards or patient and family expectations.
Renovation of the Labor and Delivery Unit helps create a state-of-the-art care environment that matches and enhances clinical excellence.
Care New England has the opportunity to develop a Women’s Health Research Institute, which would capitalize upon the strengths of women’s healthcare delivery and women’s health research across the system. Care New England is uniquely positioned to develop a truly interdisciplinary women’s health research institute because of the number of clinical service lines open, the diversity of our patient population, the high volume of patient visits across the system, and the nationally recognized expertise in women’s health.
Your donation will go directly to our new Labor and Delivery Center