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American Public Health Association
133rd Annual Meeting & Exposition
December 10-14, 2005
Philadelphia, PA
APHA 2005
3119.0: Monday, December 12, 2005 - 11:42 AM

Abstract #117770

Evaluation of the In-Home Breastfeeding Support Program: What is the effect on breastfeeding duration among low-income women in North Carolina?

Deborah L. Dee, MPH1, Margaret Bentley2, and Anna Maria Siega-Riz, PhD, RD1. (1) Dept. of Maternal and Child Health, School of Public Health, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, CB# 7445, Rosenau Hall, Chapel Hill, NC 27599-7445, 919.929.8781, deborah_dee@unc.edu, (2) Carolina Population Center, Department of Nutrition, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, 2208 McGavran Greenberg Hall, Chapel Hill, NC 27599

Breastfeeding is the ideal form of nutrition for infants, offering numerous maternal and child health benefits, yet U.S. Healthy People 2010 breastfeeding goals are not being met. Lack of postpartum support may be a factor. The In-Home Breastfeeding Support Program of North Carolina (IHBSP) provides breastfeeding education and support in establishing lactation and prolonging breastfeeding for low-income women. Mothers who wish to breastfeed are paired with program assistants (PAs) who provide breastfeeding support through hospital and home visits, and phone contacts at predetermined times. This study examined the impact of the IHBSP on breastfeeding duration, and sought to identify salient elements of the program. Program duration data were available for 2,142 clients who stopped breastfeeding during FY2001, and were compared to data for participants in NC WIC, US WIC, and US women overall. At 6 weeks postpartum, 69% of IHBSP clients were still breastfeeding v. 25% of NC WIC participants. At 6 months, proportions still breastfeeding were: 34% (IHBSP), 13% (NC WIC), 20% (US WIC), and 31% (US overall). Qualitative data were collected through focus groups and interviews of program administrators, PAs, and clients, and analyzed using N*Vivo. The ability to extend duration was attributable to the immediate, hands-on assistance in the home from a trusted, knowledgeable person (the PA) at crucial times, such as when milk comes in. PAs' ability to deliver effective support was facilitated by extensive training. Challenges to helping clients continue to breastfeed included large caseloads, physicians' ambivalence, and clients' embarrassment about breastfeeding in public.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the session, participants will be able to

Keywords: Breastfeeding, Maternal and Child Health

Related Web page: www.ces.ncsu.edu/depts/fcs/food/efnep/bf.html

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

I wish to disclose that I have NO financial interests or other relationship with the manufactures of commercial products, suppliers of commercial services or commercial supporters.

[ Recorded presentation ] Recorded presentation

Breastfeeding and Infant Nutrition

The 133rd Annual Meeting & Exposition (December 10-14, 2005) of APHA