The call comes in -- infant unconscious, not breathing. First responders speed to the home, only to find that it's too late.

"We don't do a lot of them, but when you do do a pediatric call, obviously, for me personally, that's the most worrisome call."

Bossier Parish Paramedic Phillip Myers says the numbers tell the story.

In 2011, 502 babies in Louisiana died before their first birthday, an average of 10 deaths per week, according to Louisiana Vital Records.

But Bossier Parish Emergency Medical Services is working to turn that around.

"What we're teaching them is to look for signs of infant presence in the home," Myers explains.

It's called the D.O.S.E. program, or Direct On Scene Education, the first of its kind in Northwest Louisiana.

The goal is to train first responders to identify dangers to an infant in the home while out on a call, even if that call isn't pediatric in nature.

Myers says parents usually have no idea what they're doing wrong.

"If the time is right [on a call], we'll ask the family if we're able to see their sleep quarters where the kids are sleeping at."

Myers and fellow paramedic Kim Coburn say some of the most common - and dangerous - mistakes parents make are sharing a bed with their baby, or having the infant share with its siblings.

They say many parents have their baby sleep on the floor or on an air mattress, and mistakenly fill the crib with toys or pillows.

The two paramedics also caution against using bumper pads, a product designed to prevent injuries in cribs, but something experts call a suffocation hazard.

"The baby should not be on an air mattress face down. It should always be on a hard surface or in a pack-n-play crib," says Coburn.

The stats right now are bleak.

According to the National Center for Health Statistics, Louisiana continues to have one of the highest infant mortality rates in the U.S., ranking number 44 in 2010.

And when compared with 8 other metropolitan areas across the state, Shreveport-Bossier takes the top spot, with 16 deaths per every 1,000 live births.

The good news, though, says Coburn, is that thought processes are changing.

"[Experts] used to think that every child death was a SIDS death. So they're starting to separate that."

Separate that into "SUIDS", Sudden Unexpected Infant Deaths, something Coburn describes as 100 percent preventable.

Both paramedics remind parents to make sure their baby always sleeps on its back, never on its stomach.

Place a single, tight-fitting sheet on the baby's mattress, and keep the crib clear from clutter.

And never share a bed with your baby, no matter how tempting it may be.

"And if you're going to share a room with a child, keep it across the room, that way you're more likely to get up and go across to feed them, and you'll sit there with them instead of them being right beside you," Myers says.

Bossier Parish EMS is also searching for sponsors to help purchase pack-n-plays (portable cribs) for parents who can't afford them.

EMS is also actively training first responders throughout the parish, and Director Steve Nezat says he's proud to see his team take the lead on educating their community.

"Most of us got into this business to run out and snatch people from the jaws of death with lights and sirens on. But now, more and more of us are realizing that we can save lives beforehand, before the bell hits," he says.

Right now, the D.O.S.E. program is a one-time training class, but Nezat says he expects it to eventually be integrated as part of their paramedic and EMT yearly refresher course.

You can always call Bossier Parish Emergency Medical Services at (318) 741-9201 and schedule an in-home check to make sure your baby is sleeping safely.

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