Introduction: Rates and relationships of early initiation of breastfeeding (EIBF) and exclusive breastfeeding (EBF) of mothers in rural Haiti were examined. Prelacteal and complementary feedings were identified. Methods: With a cross-sectional descriptive design, survey data from mothers (N = 195) were collected at three intervals after birth. Data were analyzed for indicators of EIBF, EBF, and complementary feedings. Results: Overall, 148 (75.9%) mothers reported EIBF, and 75 (38.5%) reported EBF. EIBF was associated with EBF, with an adjusted relative risk 1.35 (95% confidence interval = [0.84, 2.18]). Several nutritive and nonnutritive substances interrupted EBF during the first 6 months of life. Discussion: Haiti has an under-five mortality rate of 67.0/1,000 live births, exceeding the mean of 46.5/1,000 live births for developing regions. Both EIBF and EBF are associated with decreased neonatal and early infant mortality. Country-specific data are needed to inform and develop breastfeeding initiatives and community-level campaigns to improve the prevalence of EIBF and EBF in Haiti.
- cultural practices
- Early initiation breastfeeding
- exclusive breastfeeding
- prelacteal feeds
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health