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Cadernos de Saúde Pública

On-line version ISSN 1678-4464Print version ISSN 0102-311X


BERNARDI, Juliana Rombaldi; GAMA, Cíntia Mendes  and  VITOLO, Márcia Regina. An infant feeding update program at healthcare centers and its impact on breastfeeding and morbidity. Cad. Saúde Pública [online]. 2011, vol.27, n.6, pp.1213-1222. ISSN 1678-4464.

This study evaluated the impact of an infant feeding update program on exclusive breastfeeding and the incidence of diarrhea and respiratory illness in infants. A randomized cluster field study was conducted in the city of Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul State, Brazil, with 20 healthcare centers. Health professionals received information on the Ten Steps to Healthy Feeding for Children up to Two Years of Age. We evaluated 619 infants 6-9 months of age. The results showed longer duration of exclusive breastfeeding (p = 0.02) in the intervention group but no significant differences in the incidence of diarrhea or respiratory symptoms. Complementary analyses showed that exclusive breastfeeding was longer in the group of children without the occurrence of diarrhea (p = 0.001) or respiratory symptoms (p = 0.03). The data suggest that the training was insufficient to affect incidence of illness, but that it was effective in extending exclusive breastfeeding.

Keywords : Breastfeeding; Infantile Diarrhea; Respiratory Tract Diseases; Health Services.

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