Monday, May 17, 2010

"First Hug" - Only YOU can prevent . . . uh, whatever this is supposed to prevent?

Remember my April Fool's post? All those baby gadgets that one can hardly believe have even been invented, much less are in regular use? This trumps them all.

Even the car seat "sling" makes more sense.

The site tells us exactly NOTHING. Does anyone have any idea what this is for? Besides another product designed to prey on new parents' fears? I'm genuinely interested in an explanation. Like . . .

Don't you hate it when you're holding a baby and all of a sudden you just throw them in the air? Sudden Adult Spasm Causing Infant Droppage is everywhere, haven't you heard? Holding babies with only your arms and hands and bodies is perilous business. Finally, a product to make it possible! At last, we have the "First Hug"! No longer must we risk holding a baby without having our forearms connected by a piece of cloth. Help fight SASCID today!


Having one's fingers flapping about unrestricted has likely been proven to be riskier to babies. It is statistically possible that someone, somewhere has gouged a baby's eye out with an index finger, but not with a thumb, we don't think. So safe infant holding standards should ensure that only thumbs are exposed. With First Hug, recklessly exposed fingers no longer pose a threat!

Or . . . something like that.

Almost no product is bad if used appropriately, and conservatively; the Zaky in the aforementioned blog post was invented for use with preemies, and is totally understandable in such situations. So . . . exactly what makes this First Hug "the smarter, safer way to share the joy of holding your baby"? Maybe this is a big joke that I'm missing? Tell me this is a big joke that I'm missing.

The grandpa, presumably, in the photo is in a hospital gown, so it seems to suggest some kind of medical condition - but what? Is the concern about the baby or the adult? Is it perhaps specifically for adults with conditions that make it dangerous for them to hold babies somehow? (If so, I would suggest that having them hold the baby seated, with a pillow on their lap to support their arms, is as safe as it gets.) That's the best I can come up with, but if that's the case, why would they not say so? And why would the woman in the main photo appear to be completely normal? The website offers NO information on the reason for this product's existence whatsoever - except that they're giving away a million of them to new moms . . . and coincidentally, they're interested in whatever baby inventions YOU have to share with them!

Medical Safety Solutions is committed to giving away 1,000,000 free First Hug® blankets along with our MOM2B Savings Guide—a newsstand-quality publication full of great deals on the kind of products new parents are looking for.

If you’ve got a great new product for new families, or if you’ve been struggling to get your message heard in this highly-competitive market, we'd like to talk to you.


Maybe I should have my first blog contest. What do you think? Comment with your own baby invention surely invented for the sake of inventing an invention below. Points deducted for usefulness, especially if it promotes actual infant-to-parent attachment and bonding. I'll give away a little something yet to be determined (I literally just though of this this very moment and have nothing to plug). Shall we give it a week?


UPDATE: I contacted the company and asked what in the world was going on with this (in slightly nicer language). They promptly replied:

Hello, Anne. Glad you asked. We're probably going to add some more information to the site, as you're not the first person to ask this question. [Shocked, I am SHOCKED!]

The First Hug® was invented by a paramedic and respiratory therapist after 30+ years assisting in the deliveries and being around newborns. It was conceived as a delivery blanket.

It's not necessarily safer than holding a baby in your arms—if you know what you're doing. Often times, people don't. This is especially true of young people and, sadly, the elderly whose motor skills have deteriorated with time. It's clean, easy to use
and safer to hold a baby with than any loose blanket.

Hope this helps...

The First Hug® Team
So, if you check out the comments below, I think Elita was right on the money. I think they developed this for hospitals, and hospitals looked at it and said "Are you even kidding me with this nonsense?" (I'm channelling Janice Dickinson on ANTM here), so now they're trying to unload the MILLION they had prematurely manufactured. Oops!

The one somewhat legitimate use I had suspected was for the elderly, who may be frail or dealing with Parkinson's symptoms, which is one of the uses they mention. I still fail to see how this is any safer that being seated with a pillow on a lap.

And the whole original concept of using it as a "delivery blanket" is just . . . HOW, exactly? Your hands are both immobilized. How are you to do anything else that might need to be done with a newborn? Leaving aside the fact that the newborn should be with and on the mother if at all possible, let's assume there is some medical reason to take the baby away. Can you suction the baby while using First Hug? Cut the cord? Do anything that involves even one hand? Seems to me that introducing it into the delivery room requires one person to be doing nothing but standing there with their arms extended. How efficient!

Now I'm stuck with the image of someone holding the empty First Hug out underneath the woman's crowning pelvis to actually catch the baby. Still, I am tempted to order one. You know, just to help reduce the surplus.


  1. Kisses, while given to babies with the best intentions, can transmit dangerous germs. The Kiss-o-matic is made with realistic lip-like, machine-washable antibacterially treated fabric and makes a soft, gentle kissing sound at the touch of a button. Apply it to baby's cheeks, nose, belly, or toes! Batteries not included.

  2. I am so. completely. confused. What the heck???

  3. First of all, how do you find this shit? This is the most ridiculous thing I've ever seen or heard of. I scoured the website, like you, trying to figure out what the heck was going on. I couldn't, so I looked up the patent and this is what it says:

    This invention relates to an infant transport device and more particularly to a low cost, safe, and sure device by which a newborn infant may be handed from the hands of the delivering doctor or other person to the hands of a nurse for transport to a nearby warming table for warming, stimulating, and drying the infant, and providing increased assurance that the infant will be cradled and safely transported.

    I would think hospitals have no interest in purchasing this First Hug (towels and blankets work just fine for moving infant to the warming table!) so I guess that is why they are trying to market it to moms now? But seriously, what is a mom going to do with this?

  4. Elita, I think you're right on! I contacted the company and got a response, which made things clear as mud, pretty much. Check it out!

  5. I'm still laughing..."makes it easier to transfer baby?" How? There are arm holes with thumb holes...wouldn't you have to put baby down in order to have someone else pick baby up?

    Rebecca, love your invention! LOL Thanks for the laugh.

    And the only thing that popped into my head was the "manery" (or whatever) from "Meet the Fockers" that Robert DeNiro sported. haahaa

  6. The ONLY thing I can possibly think of, and it is still a real stretch, is for paramedics. They rarely catch babies, I've known EMT's who have worked for years and have never been called to a birth. I can see, maybe, something like this being useful to a nervous EMT catching a gooey-baby who is probably coming really fast. Might, maybe????? be a little more secure than plain gloved hands. Maybe? Like I said, a real stretch.

  7. The "Skinitator"! This revolutionary new product provides babies with that valuable skin to skin contact that parents may not be able to provide.We've exhumed cadavers and using a scientific skin peeling system utilizing wasted skin cells, have mixed them with your babies own cord blood! We then weave the "skin" with a combination of natural wool and nylon cord. Once bound into blanket form the Skinitator is ready for any newborn in need. Great for the current hospital climate of little or no encouraged skin to skin contact, a Skinitator is a must have in every hospital bag! Why bother holding your newborn when you can purchase your babies very own skin blanket?
    Now available in "Rock Star" with skin infused with exhumed musicians skin only,and coming soon "Tragic Actor".

  8. I'm laughing too hard to come up with an invention of my own. Or non-invention, as the case may be. Why on earth would you have so many made without any sales?