TENS of thousands of expectant mothers received baby boxes in 2019.

NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde delivered the most baby boxes of any local health board, with a total of 11,258 boxes delivered to mothers last year.

Across Scotland, 96 per cent of expectant parents took up the government’s offer of a baby box, which includes essential items for the first months of a baby’s life.

The boxes, which themselves can be used as a safe sleeping space, include items to give every child born in Scotland “the best start in life”, including clothes, a blanket, a digital ear thermometer, a baby wrap and a poem from Scots Makar Jackie Kay welcoming wee ones into the world.

The government introduced the boxes in 2017, inspired by a similar initiative from Finland, with the aim of reducing the number of children dying in their first year of life.

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A total of 45,558 babies received the boxes across the whole of Scotland last year.

Parents reported universal satisfaction with the boxes – 100 per cent of surveyed recipients were “satisfied or very satisfied” with the quality of the boxes’ contents.

Finland, which has the lowest rates of child mortality in the world, began handing out the starter kit in 1949.

Children’s Minister Maree Todd said: “I would like to thank everyone involved – from organisations providing items, to box packers, to the health workers delivering the boxes.”

She described the delivery of more than 115,000 boxes to families since 2017 as a “huge vote of confidence” in the initiative.