Title

Pediatric Nurses' Knowledge and Attitudes Regarding the Provision of Breastfeeding Support in a Pediatric Medical Center

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2012

Abstract

Breastfeeding is the biological norm for infant feeding and nutrition. Successful breastfeeding depends, in part, on the support of the nursing staff caring for the breastfeeding dyad. Many infants are admitted to pediatric hospitals during the period when breastfeeding skills are being established, and mothers look to pediatric nurses to provide breastfeeding support and resources. There are few studies describing pediatric nurses' knowledge of and attitudes towards the provision of breastfeeding support in pediatric medical centers. The purpose of this descriptive survey study was to determine knowledge and attitudes of pediatric nurses regarding the provision of breastfeeding support. The Theory of Reasoned Action provided the framework for the study. A convenience sample of 92 pediatric nurses, on three inpatient units at a pediatric medical center, completed a 40-item breastfeeding survey. Seventy-seven complete surveys were returned for a usable response rate of 84%. Results indicated that pediatric nurses have moderate breastfeeding knowledge and attitudes. The pediatric nurses who had personal breastfeeding experience had significantly higher knowledge and attitude scores. Findings suggest the need for evidence-based educational programs to improve pediatric nurses' knowledge of and attitudes towards the provision of breastfeeding support in pediatric medical centers.

DOI

10.1891/215805312807009397