INTRODUCTION: Healthcare provider’s knowledge has been identified as a factor associated with clinical practice skills and exclusive breastfeeding prevalence.
OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the level of knowledge and training in breastfeeding of healthcare provider’s that work in family healthcare centers of Maipu, Chile, (midwifes, physicians, nurses and nutritionists). To determine association among level of knowledge, profession and breastfeeding training.
METHODS: Quantitative, cross-sectional, analytical study. Participants were healthcare professionals regularly participating in healthy child exams of six month old babies. We used a validated survey based on the “Ten steps for successful breastfeeding”. Statistical analyses included frequencies, percentages, measures of central tendency as well as the association among level of knowledge, profession and training in breastfeeding.
RESULTS: Results showed that of the total number of participants (n=78), 42.2% classified as “average”, 3.8% as “poor” and near 50% as “good” or “very good” knowledge. Nutritionists obtained the best scores in knowledge about breastfeeding with 50% of “very good”, followed by nurses and midwifes, with 39% and 35% respectively. On the other hand, most physicians obtained “good” (65.4%) and only 7.7% “very good”. Only 33% had had breastfeeding training at some point of their lives, and 6.4% had had one training session in the last year. We highlight that 34.6 to 42.3% of those who obtained “good” and “very good” scores had had breastfeeding training. Knowledge level was directly associated with breastfeeding training (p=0.033) and healthcare profession (p=0.019).
CONCLUSION: Healthcare professionals have different levels of breastfeeding knowledge. Breastfeeding training sessions significantly increase knowledge, which could improve breastfeeding prevalence.
- healthcare providers
ASJC Scopus subject areas