Racial Differences in Breastfeeding Initiation Among Participants in a Midwestern Public Health District
By Pineros-Leano M, Tabb K, Simonovich S, Wang Y, Meline B, Huang H
Purpose: Although variations in breastfeeding initiation are well documented, the contributing role of maternal race remains poorly understood, especially among the multiracial—two or more races—population. The purpose of this study is to examine differences in breastfeeding initiation among a racially and ethnically diverse population of low-income women.
Methods: Participants for this study (n=1010) were enrolled in the supplemental nutrition program for women, infant, and children and concurrently enrolled in a perinatal depression registry at a public health clinic in the Midwest. Race was obtained from medical records. Breastfeeding initiation was gathered through a clinical interview during the first postpartum visit. Logistic regression was conducted using STATA 14.2.
Results: Sixty-eight percent of study participants reported breastfeeding initiation. The bivariate analysis demonstrated that there were significant differences in rates of breastfeeding initiation by race/ethnicity. The logistic regression models showed that after adjusting for maternal education, age, income, nativity, parity, body mass index, and antenatal smoking, Black (odds ratio [OR] 0.47; confidence interval [95% CI] 0.34–0.66), multiracial (OR 0.21; 95% CI 0.07–0.65), and Latina women (OR 0.48; 95% CI 0.26–0.86) were significantly less likely to initiate breastfeeding compared with White women.
Conclusion: These findings highlight the need for further understanding of the underlying barriers to the initiation of breastfeeding among low-income Black, multiracial, and Latina women. Moreover, breastfeeding should remain a priority for intervention and policy development, particularly among racially and ethnically diverse low-income women.
February 10, 2019
Pineros-Leano M, Tabb K, Simonovich S, Wang Y, Meline B, Huang H (2018) Racial Differences in Breastfeeding Initiation Among Participants in a Midwestern Public Health District. Health Equity: Vol. 2, Issue 1, pp. 296 - 303. Available online: https://www.liebertpub.com/doi/10.1089/heq.2018.0016