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Midwifery. 2003 Sep;19(3):215-20.

An evaluation of a support group for breast-feeding women in Salisbury, UK.

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Institute of Health and Community Studies, Bournemouth University, Dorset, UK.



To evaluate a newly set-up breast-feeding support group. SETTING, PARTICIPANTS, DESIGN AND ANALYSIS: Lay 'Bosom Buddies' were trained, and ran a weekly drop-in group with a breast-feeding counsellor and a midwife in a socio-economically disadvantaged housing estate. During the first 31 weeks, 53 breast-feeding women attended and consent was sought to send an anonymous postal questionnaire six weeks after their first attendance. Content analysis and descriptive statistics have been used.


The response rate to the questionnaire was 87% (45/52) with 76% of respondents (34/45) reporting that they were still breast feeding. Only four women had discontinued for the reason for which they had initially attended the group. While the greatest value of the group was considered by the women to relate to its function in supporting breast feeding, 46% (141/305) of the aspects identified by them as being 'good' related to issues of a predominantly psychosocial nature. Of the women sent questionnaires 38% (20/52) came from areas with high or medium unemployment.


This group appears to be highly successful in supporting women to continue to breast feed for at least six weeks following their first attendance. It also appears to provide psycho-social benefits.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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