A Practical Intervention to Increase Breastfeeding Initiation Among Cambodian Women in the US
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Cambodians have the lowest breastfeeding initiation rate of any racial/ethnic group in Massachusetts. One barrier to breastfeeding is a lack of hospital foods that allow women to follow a traditional diet postpartum. We examined whether a culturally acceptable menu for new Cambodian mothers would increase breastfeeding initiation in the hospital. After a staff training program on breastfeeding, and the creation of a Cambodian menu, initiation rates increased significantly more in Cambodians than in non-Cambodians. Pre intervention, breastfeeding initiation was 16.7% (2/12) among Cambodians, compared to 60.6% (106/175) among non-Cambodians (P = 0.003). Post intervention, there was no significant difference between breastfeeding initiation rates among Cambodian women (66.7%; 8/12) compared to non-Cambodians (68.9%; 104/151) (P = 0.874).
KeywordsCambodian Culturally competent care Breastfeeding Hospital menu
We would like to acknowledge the work of Lindsay P. MacAuley, MPH, for data collection, and Barbara L. Philipp, MD, for teaching part of Project HELP.
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