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South Med J. 2002 Aug;95(8):909-13.

Breastfeeding rates at an urban medical university after initiation of an educational program.

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  • 1Department of Pediatrics, Children's Hospital, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston 29425, USA.



Our objective was to improve breastfeeding initiation rates at an urban medical center.


A breastfeeding educational program for health care providers was developed and implemented in 1995. The outcome variable of interest was the change in breastfeeding initiation rate during 2 periods, 1993-1994 and 1996 to 1999, stratified by weight (> 2,000, 1,500 to 2,000, and < 1,500 g).


The breastfeeding initiation rate in 1996 to 1999 for all mothers of newborns admitted to the hospital was 47.1% (4,107/8,724), compared with the 1993-1994 rate of 18.9% (816/4,315). During the second period, the breastfeeding rate among mothers of infants < 1,500 g was 60.8% (468/770), compared with 19.2% (56/293) during the earlier study period. Stratified by weight, the greatest improvement in rates of breastfeeding initiation and at discharge was seen with mothers of preterm infants.


A breastfeeding educational program that interfaced with medical staff and mothers at an urban medical university was associated with increased rates of breastfeeding initiation.

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