From Policy to Practice Change: Nursing Partnerships in Practice to Change Low-Income African American and Hispanic Initiation of Breastfeeding Rates
Article first published online: 14 JUN 2012
© 2012 AWHONN, the Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses
Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic, & Neonatal Nursing
Special Issue: 2012 Convention Proceedings
Volume 41, Issue s1, page S92, June 2012
How to Cite
DiGiacomo, P. and McKeever, A. (2012), From Policy to Practice Change: Nursing Partnerships in Practice to Change Low-Income African American and Hispanic Initiation of Breastfeeding Rates. Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic, & Neonatal Nursing, 41: S92. doi: 10.1111/j.1552-6909.2012.01361_55.x
- Issue published online: 14 JUN 2012
- Article first published online: 14 JUN 2012
- women's health;
Purpose for the Program
It has been well documented in previous research that a low-income African American pregnant women are less likely to initiate and continue breastfeeding for the recommended first year of the infant's life. According to National Health and Nutritional data, breastfeeding rates include the following: non-Hispanic White (61%), Spanish-speaking Mexican American (63%), and African American (26%). Mothers with higher levels of education and income have greater breastfeeding initiation and continuation rates than mothers with low-income and low levels of education. Contributing factors are cultural, economic, educational, and social. Low-income African American mothers who have lower levels of education need additional support during and after pregnancy with follow-up continued for the first year of their infants’ lives. Previous, evidence-based, educational interventions have demonstrated success in breastfeeding initiation and duration in low-income African American and Hispanic pregnant populations.
The purpose of this presentation is to demonstrate an innovative breastfeeding educational program in a large medical center in an urban setting providing maternal–child health services to primarily low-income African American and Hispanic women, where breastfeeding initiation rates stand at 45% compared with the Healthy People 2020 initiation rate of 89%. Using a practice partnership model, the aligned nursing program of the medical institution developed and implemented a program in conjunction with the maternal–child health services. This educational program begins in the antenatal clinic using the support of nursing faculty and students and continues through the intrapartum and postpartum units with post-licensure nurses.
In collaboration with the multidisciplinary breastfeeding task force, which guides practice initiatives based on evidence-based practice guidelines, a comprehensive breastfeeding program will begin in the prenatal office and continue through discharge.
Implementation, Outcomes, and Evaluation
With the support of a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Health 2011, $5,000 was awarded to facilitate staff breastfeeding education through in-services and reading materials. Also, patient education materials will be purchased to utilize through the continuum of perinatal services. Our goal is to increase our breastfeeding initiation rates and to emphasize the duration time for breastfeeding to ensure our newborns become healthy children and adults.
Implications for Nursing Practice
Implications for nursing practice will be discussed.