A feeding education program to prevent mother-to-child transmission of HIV in Haiti

AIDS Care. 2009 Mar;21(3):349-54. doi: 10.1080/09540120802195101.


In Haiti, as in most of the developing world, vertical transmission of HIV from infected mother to infant through postpartum breastfeeding remains a significant mode of transmission. As part of their prevention of mother-to-child transmission program, the Groupe Haitien d'Etude du Sarcome de Kaposi et des Infections Opportunistes (GHESKIO) Centers developed a feeding education program in which over 83% of the HIV-positive pregnant women who were eligible to participate, enrolled. Bivariate and adjusted multivariate logistic regression analyses were used to compare feeding choices of the 290 women who participated in the feeding education program to 58 who did not. Of those who participated, 91.7% chose to use replacement formulas for their newborns, while 75.9% of those who did not participate chose replacement feeding. After adjustment for socio-demographic variables, analyses revealed that the no education group was less likely to adopt replacement feeding and more likely to use mixed feeding (OR=0.31, p=0.004; and OR=2.74, p=0.05, respectively). This suggests that a targeted and culturally appropriate education program can be effective in encouraging replacement feeding, even in those countries where breastfeeding is the norm.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Breast Feeding / adverse effects
  • Choice Behavior*
  • Feeding Methods*
  • Female
  • HIV Infections / transmission*
  • Haiti
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infectious Disease Transmission, Vertical / prevention & control*
  • Mothers / education*
  • Program Evaluation
  • Risk Factors