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. 2016 Nov;20(11):2612-2623.
doi: 10.1007/s10461-016-1378-x.

Infant and Young Child Feeding Counseling, Decision-Making, and Practices Among HIV-Infected Women in Malawi's Option B+ Prevention of Mother-to-Child Transmission Program: A Mixed Methods Study

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Free PMC article

Infant and Young Child Feeding Counseling, Decision-Making, and Practices Among HIV-Infected Women in Malawi's Option B+ Prevention of Mother-to-Child Transmission Program: A Mixed Methods Study

Valerie L Flax et al. AIDS Behav. .
Free PMC article

Abstract

This study examined infant and young child feeding (IYCF) counseling, decision-making, and practices among HIV-infected women with children 0-23 months participating in Malawi's Option B+ prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) program. We conducted 160 survey interviews, 32 in-depth interviews, and 32 observations of PMTCT visits. Surveys indicated that exclusive breastfeeding was common (75 %) among children <6 months, while minimum dietary diversity (41 %) and minimum acceptable diet (40 %) for children 6-23 months occurred less often. In-depth interviews supported these findings. Most women felt comfortable with current breastfeeding recommendations, but chronic food insecurity made it difficult for them to follow complementary feeding guidelines. Women trusted IYCF advice from health workers, but mainly received it during pregnancy. During observations of postnatal PMTCT visits, health workers infrequently advised on breastfeeding (41 % of visits) or complementary feeding (29 % of visits). This represents a missed opportunity for health workers to support optimal IYCF practices within Option B+.

Keywords: Breast feeding; Complementary feeding; HIV; Option B+; Prevention of mother-to-child transmission.

Conflict of interest statement

The authors report no conflicts of interest.

Figures

Figure 1
Figure 1
Sample selection for a study of infant and young child feeding attitudes, practices, and counseling among HIV-infected women in Option B+ in Lilongwe District, Malawi. Women were recruited to participate in only one form of data collection.

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