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Babies With Books Read-a-thon

2022 Read-a-thon

Registration is now open for the September 2022 read-a-thon!



Join us this Sept 12-22, 2022 in the third annual Babies With Books Read-a-thon to support NICU families and celebrate shared reading!
The BWB Read-a-thon is a friendly reading competition between NICUs to encourage reading with babies for its many benefits to NICU babies and families. This read-a-thon (Sept 12-22, 2022) builds upon last year's read-a-thon in which 105 NICUs participated and there were a total of 17,292 sessions of reading to babies over the 11 day period.

There is no cost to joining this NICU read-a-thon and hospitals that cannot provide books to their families can still participate! BWB will provide you with information and suggestions that make hosting a read-a-thon easy, fun, and successful. 

Participating hospitals receive BWB's read-a-thon process guide with step-by-step guidelines for organizing and implementing the read-a-thon. Our guide includes materials and resources such as:

  • Family information on how and why to read in the NICU

  • Healthcare Provider information on NICU reading rationale

  • Suggestions for engaging families and healthcare providers in read-a-thon

  • Templated materials to promote read-a-thon

  • Templated reading tracking sheets

  • ​Templated data collection sheets

  • Books lists in multiple languages, including easy access to free, online books


Learn more about how reading aloud with babies beginning in the NICU supports infant brain development, promotes family bonding, and reduces stress here.  

For questions about the read-a-thon, please contact Benjamin Olshin at

2022 Read-a-thon

2022 Read-a-thon Registrants

  • Abrazo Arrowhead Hospital

  • Advent Health Shawnee Mission

  • Advocate Children's Hospital in Oak Lawn

  • Advocate Children's Hospital in Park Ridge

  • Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital

  • Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center

  • Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist, Brenner Children's Hospital

  • Aurora BayCare Medical Center

  • Banner Children's at Banner Desert Medical Center

  • Banner Thunderbird Medical Center

  • Banner University Medical Center Tucson

  • Barnet Hospital in the UK

  • Baylor Scott and White Medical Center of Frisco

  • BC Women's Hospital

  • Beacon Children's Hospital

  • Bellin Health Hospital

  • Birmingham Women’s Hospital

  • Boston Medical Center

  • Bozeman Health

  • Bronson Children's Hospital

  • BSA Health System

  • Cardinal Glennon Children's Hospital

  • Carle Foundation Hospital

  • Catawba Valley Medical Center

  • Cedars-Sinai Medical Center

  • Chandler Regional Medical Center

  • CHI at Temple Street in Ireland

  • CHI Crumlin in the UK

  • Children's Hospital Colorado in Aurora

  • Children's Hospital Colorado in Colorado Springs

  • Children's Hospital of New Orleans

  • Children's Memorial Hermann Hospital NICU

  • Children's Mercy Hospital

  • Children’s Wisconsin

  • Childrens Healthcare of Atlanta

  • CHOP at Penn Medicine Chester County Hospital

  • Christiana Care

  • CHU Sainte-Justine in Canada

  • Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center

  • Cleveland Clinic Akron General

  • Cleveland Clinic Hillcrest Hospital

  • Connecticut Children's at UConn Health

  • Connecticut Children's Medical Center

  • Cook Children's Medical Center

  • Cooperman Barnabas Medical Center

  • Dartmouth Health Children's Hospital

  • Edward Hospital

  • Flushing Hospital Medical Center

  • Geisinger Wyoming Valley

  • George Washington University Hospital

  • Glan Clwyd Hospital in the UK

  • Glangwili Hospital

  • Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida

  • Good Samaritan Hospital

  • Greater Baltimore Medical Center

  • HCA Houston Healthcare Conroe

  • HCA Houston Healthcare Kingwood

  • HCA Houston Healthcare West

  • Henry Ford Hospital

  • Hospital of Central Connecticut

  • Houston Methodist The Woodlands

  • Houston Methodist Willowbrook Hospital

  • Huntington Memorial Hospital

  • Inova Loudoun

  • Intermountain Medical Center

  • IWK Health in Canada

  • Jewish General Hospital

  • Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital

  • John Muir Medical Center Walnut Creek

  • John Peter Smith Hospital

  • John R. Oishei Children's Hospital

  • Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center

  • Kaiser Permanente Santa Clara Medical Center

  • Kapiolani Medical Center for Women and Children

  • Legacy Salmon Creek Medical Center

  • Liberty Hospital

  • Logan Regional Hospital

  • Loma Linda University Children's Hospital

  • Marshfield Children's Hospital

  • Mayo Clinic

  • McMaster Children's Hospital in Canada

  • Mease Countryside Hospital

  • Medical Center Hospital

  • Medstar Franklin Square Medical Center

  • Memorial Hermann Memorial City

  • Memorial Hermann The Woodlands

  • Memorial Hospital Miramar

  • Mercy San Juan Medical Center

  • Mercyhealth Javon Bea Riverside

  • Methodist Children’s Hospital

  • Methodist Women's Hospital

  • Midland Health - Midland Memorial Hospital

  • Millard Fillmore Suburban Hospital

  • Miller Children's & Women's Hospital Long Beach

  • Mission Trail Baptist Hospital

  • Monroe Carell, Jr. Children's Hospital

  • Montefiore Medical Center

  • Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center

  • Morton Plant Hospital

  • Mott Children's Hospital

  • Mount Carmel St. Ann's Hospital

  • Munson Medical Center

  • National Maternity Hospital in Ireland

  • Nationwide Children's Hospital

  • Nationwide Children's Hospital at Riverside Methodist Hospital

  • Nationwide Children's Hospital at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center

  • Nationwide Children's NICU at Grant

  • Nebraska Medicine Nebraska Medical Center

  • Nemours Children's Hospital

  • North Central Baptist Hospital

  • North Shore University Hospital

  • Novant Health Hemby Childrens Hospital Intensive Care Nursery

  • NYU Langone Hospital—Long Island

  • Ochsner Medical Center - Westbank Campus

  • Oklahoma Children's Hospital OU Health

  • OSF Saint Francis Children's Hospital of Illinois

  • Our Lady of Lourdes Women’s and Children’s Hospital

  • PeaceHealth Sacred Heart RiverBend Medical Center

  • Peyton Manning Children's Hospital

  • PIH Health Whittier Hospital

  • Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center

  • Presbyterian Hospital

  • Princess of Wales Hospital, Bridgend

  • Prisma Health Richland Hospital

  • Providence Portland Medical Center

  • Providence Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital

  • Rady Children Hospital of San Diego

  • Randall Children's Hospital

  • Regions Hospital

  • Riverside University Hospital System

  • Rochester General Hospital

  • Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center

  • Rose Medical Center

  • Rush Copley Medical Center

  • Salem Health

  • San Francisco General Hospital

  • Sanford Children's Hospital

  • Santa Clara Valley Medical Center

  • Sharp Mary Birch Hospital for Women and Newborns

  • Sheikh Khalifa Medical City in the United Arab Emirates

  • Singleton Hospital in the UK

  • St Joseph Medical Center

  • St Joseph Women's Hospital

  • St Jude Medical Center

  • St. Joseph South-BayCare

  • St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center

  • St. Louis Children’s Hospital

  • St. Luke's Kansas City

  • St. Luke's South Hospital

  • St. Luke’s Baptist Hospital

  • St. Luke’s East

  • St. Mary's Medical Center

  • St. Paul's Hospital Millennium Medical College in Ethiopia

  • St. Peter's Hospital

  • Swedish Providence Hospital Issaquah

  • The Children's Hospital at Providence in Anchorage

  • The Children's Hospital of San Antonio

  • The Clarke Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital

  • The Grange University Hospital, Neonatal Unit

  • Trinity Health Ann Arbor

  • Trinity Health St. Mary's

  • UCHealth - Poudre Valley Hospital

  • UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital Mission Bay

  • UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital Oakland

  • UH Rainbow Babies and Children's Hopsital

  • UHS Wilson Medical Center

  • UNC Health

  • UnityPoint Health - Meriter Hospital

  • UnityPoint Health - St. Luke's Hospital

  • University Health Truman Medical Center

  • University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences

  • University of California Davis Children's Hospital

  • University of California, Irvine Medical Center

  • University of Cincinnati Medical Center

  • University of Illinois Hospital and Health Sciences System

  • University of Iowa Stead Family Children's Hospital

  • University of Texas Medical Branch

  • University of Vermont Medical Center

  • University of Virginia Children's Hospital

  • University of Washington Medical Center

  • UPMC Harrisburg

  • UR Medicine Golisano Children's Hospital

  • UW Health SwedishAmerican Hospital

  • Valley Childrens Hospital

  • Valley Medical Center

  • Victoria General Hospital in Canada

  • Virginia Commonwealth University Healthcare System

  • Virtua Voorhees Hospital

  • Walter Reed National Military Medical Center

  • Washington Regional Medical Center

  • Waterbury Hospital

  • Wellstar Kennestone Hospital

  • Wentworth-Douglass Hospital

  • Wesley Medical Center

  • White Plains Hospital

  • Winter Haven Women’s Hospital

  • Yale New Haven Hospital

  • Yuma Regional Medical Center

Past BWB Read-a-thons (2020 & 2021)


NICUs participated


Reading sessions at each participating NICU


Average number of reading sessions per infant per day

Anchor 1

2021 Read-a-thon:

Winning Hospitals (based on reading rate):

First: Rochester General Hospital

Second: Providence Portland Medical Center

Third: Emory Decatur Hospital

2020 Read-a-thon:


NICUs participated


Reading sessions at each participating NICU


Average number of reading sessions per infant per day

Winning Hospitals (based on reading rate):

First: Emory Decatur Hospital 

Second: University of Vermont Medical Center

Third: Rochester General Hospital

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Read-a-thon Videos

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Read-a-thon Feedback:

“Families rallied around the chance to start reading with their babies as a way to bond.”

-  NICU Nurse

"I loved it! And the babies seemed to enjoy it, too. I noticed they became calm, attentive, and had more regular heart rates and breathing rates when being read to."

- NICU Speech Therapist

"I'm so proud of our entire NICU team for participating in this amazing opportunity to help bring awareness to a crucial and often under recognized topic."

- NICU Medical Director

“This experience reminds me why I love my job."

- Chief Nursing Officer


Planned future read-a-thon dates:


Read-a-thon: September 11-21, 2023

Midway celebration: Friday, September 15th, 2023

Final celebration: Wednesday, September 27th, 2023



Read-a-thon: September 9-19, 2024

Midway celebration: Friday, September 13th, 2024

Final celebration: Wednesday, September 25th, 2024



Read-a-thon: September 8-18, 2025

Midway celebration: Friday, September 12th, 2025

Final celebration: Wednesday, September 24th, 2025

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