239359 Illinois breastfeeding blueprint: Moving from data to strategic action for change

Monday, October 31, 2011: 4:30 PM

Beth Pellettieri, MPH , HealthConnect One, Chicago, IL
Deborah L. Rosenberg, PhD , Epidemiology and Biostatistics, SPH, Division of, MC 923, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Rachel Abramson, RN, MS, IBCLC , HealthConnect One, Chicago, IL
Amanda Bennett, MPH , University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Brenda Matthews, MS, RD, LDN, CLC, CLE , Division of Community Health and Prevention, Illinois Department of Human Services, Chicago, IL
Myrtis Sullivan, MD, MPH , Formerly of the Illinois Department of Human Services, Chicago, IL
Breastfeeding rates in Illinois have largely remained below Healthy People 2010 (and 2020) objectives and wide disparities exist by race/ethnicity and socioeconomic status. In 2008, initiation rates were at 86% for Hispanics, 79% for whites and 55% for blacks. By two weeks postpartum, about 9,000 of those women stopped.

To address this, HealthConnect One, Illinois Department of Human Services, and University of Illinois at Chicago collaborated to create the Illinois Breastfeeding Blueprint: A Map for Change, a strategic plan for decreasing Illinois breastfeeding disparities based on quantitative and qualitative data.

Quantitative data analysis on breastfeeding initiation, duration and exclusivity used Illinois PRAMS data for 2000-2008. The impact of hospital practice on breastfeeding continuation to 6 weeks was also assessed. Qualitative data from five forums in the Chicago area brought together the voices of physicians, healthcare providers and parents. Forums provided first-hand knowledge on barriers and strategies related to breastfeeding.

Data from the Blueprint is being shared with diverse stakeholders, in a collaborative, multi-faceted and comprehensive process. Participants are developing targeted policy recommendations and implementation strategies for improving breastfeeding rates in Illinois. Recommendations are structured around key entities with the ability to create change: hospitals and health professionals, state and local government, community-based organizations, workplaces and insurers.

Movement has begun on some recommendations: working with hospitals to achieve Baby Friendly designation, engaging the Regional Perinatal System on integrating statewide breastfeeding support, improving workplace support for breastfeeding mothers, and modifying the breastfeeding variable on the Illinois Birth Certificate to include exclusive breastfeeding.

The Illinois Breastfeeding Blueprint: A Map for Change is moving research to action by taking strategic steps towards policy change.

Learning Areas:
Advocacy for health and health education
Diversity and culture
Other professions or practice related to public health
Public health or related public policy
Systems thinking models (conceptual and theoretical models), applications related to public health

Learning Objectives:
1. Describe the state of breastfeeding in Illinois based on quantitative and qualitative data analysis. 2. Explain the implementation of the Illinois Breastfeeding Blueprint recommendations and action plan. 3. Compare and discuss the policy change in Illinois with movement in other states and communities.

Keywords: Breastfeeding, Public Health Policy

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I'm Executive Director of HealthConnect One, the key implementation agency responsible for the Illinois Breastfeeding Blueprint. I have been presenting on the Blueprint in Illinois over the last year. I have over 25 years of experience doing breastfeeding work.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.