Effectiveness of an exclusive breastfeeding promotion strategy adopting the trans-theoretical model: a clinical study conducted at the clinical birth unit
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University of Palermo Via del Vespro 133, Palermo 90127 Italy
University of Palermo
University of Palermo Italy
ARNAS Civico Italy
ARNAS Ospedali Civico-Di Cristina-Benfratelli
Coppola ARNAS Ospedali Civico-Di Cristina-Benfratelli Italy
Publication date: 2023-04-26
Popul. Med. 2023;5(Supplement):A1130
Background and objective:
Breastfeeding is the gold standard in infant nutrition. There are numerous physical and psychosocial benefits from breastfeeding for both mother and child and it is strongly recommended as an exclusive source of nutrition for the first six months of life. The low prevalence and the short duration of breastfeeding, reported in scientific literature, highlight the need for further investigations that could lead to new intervention strategies. The aim of this study is to evaluate the effectiveness of a breastfeeding promotion intervention conducted in hospital after the birth.

The study is taking place at birth clinic of two hospitals in Palermo, where mothers are recruited after giving birth. The control group is provided with basic information on breastfeeding, while the intervention group is offered the active support of an informative "desk" specifically dedicated to breastfeeding counselling. Furthermore, the factors associated with breastfeeding and the different phases of the behavioural change, linked to adoption of this practice, are investigated exploring the "Trans Theoretical Model".

The study is ongoing and 114 mothers have been recruited to date. Of them, 47% (n=54) of women choose to give their child exclusively breast milk, while about 38% (n=43) are in a "contemplation" stage of adopting the practice. Statistical analyses show the factors that positively influence the decision to breastfeed were: support during pregnancy by a private gynaecologist (OR=4.4, p=0.021), adequate information on the importance of breastfeeding (OR=1.85, p=0.013), rooming-in with the new-born in hospital (OR=3.1, p=0.038).

The study contemplate monitoring adherence to breastfeeding in the intervention arm in the six months following recruitment. The comparison with the control arm will allow to evaluate the effectiveness of this mother-child health strategy. Furthermore, the identification of influencing factors could lead to more appropriate management of breastfeeding promotion.

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