Populations at Risk Across the Lifespan: Population Studies
Women, Infant and Children (WIC) Peer Counselor Contact with First Time Breastfeeding Mothers
This study was designed to determine whether singleton women who had not previously breastfed and who had a women, infant and children (WIC) peer counselor were more likely to initiate breastfeeding than women not exposed to the WIC peer counselor.
Design and Sample
The retrospective cross-sectional study used data from the 2009 Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) WIC Infant Feeding Practices Survey (IFPS) administered through 73 local WIC agencies. Of the 5,427 responses to the 2009 Texas DSHS WIC IFP Survey, 56.6% (N = 3,070) were included in this study.
The Texas DSHS WIC IFPS, a 55-item survey with multiple-choice and two open-ended questions, was used to evaluate breastfeeding beliefs, attitudes, and practices among women receiving WIC services.
Women who had peer counselor contact during pregnancy, in the hospital, and after delivery were more likely to initiate breastfeeding than women without such contacts, OR = 1.36, 2.06, 1.85, respectively.
Women's decision to initiate breastfeeding is significantly associated with WIC peer counselor contacts. Continued WIC peer counselor program services may increase breastfeeding initiation rates among WIC participants.