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Prevalence of Exclusive Breast Milk Feeding at Discharge and Associated Factors Among Preterm Neonates Admitted to a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit in Public Hospitals, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia: A Cross-Sectional Study

Authors Degaga GT, Sendo EG, Tesfaye T

Received 10 May 2019

Accepted for publication 7 December 2019

Published 20 January 2020 Volume 2020:11 Pages 21—28


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Roosy Aulakh

Gosa Tesfaye Degaga, 1 Endalew Gemechu Sendo, 2 Tewodros Tesfaye 2

1Department of Nursing, Ambo University, Ambo, Ethiopia; 2School of Nursing and Midwifery, College of Health Sciences, Addis Ababa University, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Correspondence: Tewodros Tesfaye
School of Nursing and Midwifery, College of Health Sciences, Addis Ababa University, P.O. Box 9086, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Tel +251913698081

Background: Studies show that rates of breast milk feeding are much lower among preterm infants than term infants, and breast milk feeding at discharge varies widely between countries. However, research examining factors associated with exclusive breast milk feeding at discharge among preterm neonates in Ethiopia is limited. The study aimed to assess the prevalence of exclusive breast milk feeding at discharge and associated factors among preterm neonates at the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) in public hospitals, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
Methods: This facility-based cross-sectional study was conducted from February to March 2017 among preterm infants discharged from the NICU of public hospitals. Data were collected using pretested structured questionnaires. Purposive sampling technique was used. Factors associated with exclusive breast milk-fed infants at discharge among preterm neonates were determined using bivariate and multivariate logistic regression models. Statistically significant associations were declared at P< 0.05.
Results: The study assessed 263 mother-preterm dyads. The findings from this study revealed that 71.9% of exclusive breast milk-fed infants at discharge at NICU of the selected Public hospitals in Addis Ababa. Factors associated with exclusive breast milk-fed infants at discharge included duration of hospital stay for 7– 14 days (AOR 0.19, 95% CI 0.049– 0.808) and more than 14 days (AOR 0.20, 95% CI 0.046,0.891), Initiation of breast milk expression later than 48 hrs postpartum (AOR 0.10, 95% CI 0.032– 0.365) and receiving hospital support (AOR 39.00, 95% CI 11.676– 130.290).
Conclusion: In this study, nearly ¾ of the NICU premature population exclusively breast milk fed at discharge, which designates to establish exclusive breastfeeding in the majority of preterm infants in this cohort. Thus, support for exclusive breast milk fed should be at the forefront of maternity practice in hospital and mothers of preterm infants to be guided to initiation of early breast milk expression as soon after delivery as possible and frequent expression thereafter.

Keywords: breast milk feeding, preterm infant, NICU, Addis Ababa

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