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      A formative study to inform mHealth based randomized controlled trial intervention to promote exclusive breastfeeding practices in Myanmar: incorporating qualitative study findings


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          Undernutrition is a major concern for Myanmar children with low exclusive breastfeeding rate (24%). A formative study was conducted to explore the perceptions and practices relating to exclusive breastfeeding, and barriers and facilitators to using mobile communications for exclusive breastfeeding counselling. The results inform the design of a randomized control trial to promote exclusive breastfeeding practices among Myanmar mothers.


          We conducted twenty in-depth interviews with pregnant women and accompanying family members attending an antenatal clinic at the Central Women’s Hospital, Yangon, seven key-informant interviews and one focus group discussion with fifteen service providers such as nurses, doctors, managers and staff from the National Nutrition Centre, Department of Health, United Nations Children’s Fund International and National Non-Government Organizations and Ooredoo, a private mobile company.


          Widespread practices of feeding water, honey, infant formula and semi-solid food were reported to be existed in the community before the child reaches four months, mostly influenced by grandmothers from both sides. All couples knew breast milk was good for baby and intended to breastfeed, though limited understanding of the term exclusive breastfeeding was reported. Perception that breast milk alone was not sufficient to provide all nutrients needed for the first six months of baby’s life, mother had insufficient milk supply or breast problems, mother’s back to work and grandmothers’ influence emerged as barriers to breastfeed exclusively for six months. All women knew how to make basic phone calls, majority could read mobile text message in Burmese and possess mobile phones while a few of them shared phones with their husbands. All couples preferred to receive text messages 2–3 times per week in the evening. Institutional staff suggested messages to be simple, easily understandable and culturally appropriate. Perceived barriers included limited mobile network coverage, affordability of mobile handset and phone bills, literacy and community familiarity with text messages. All respondents welcomed the idea of planned intervention.


          We incorporated findings to develop messages and determine the modality, inclusion criteria and tailored with gestation and child age, to be delivered in the randomized controlled trial intervention.

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          Breast-feeding patterns, time to initiation, and mortality risk among newborns in southern Nepal.

          Initiation of breast-feeding within 1 h after birth has been associated with reduced neonatal mortality in a rural Ghanaian population. In South Asia, however, breast-feeding patterns and low birth weight rates differ and this relationship has not been quantified. Data were collected during a community-based randomized trial of the impact of topical chlorhexidine antisepsis interventions on neonatal mortality and morbidity in southern Nepal. In-home visits were conducted on d 1-4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 14, 21, and 28 to collect longitudinal information on timing of initiation and pattern of breast-feeding. Multivariable regression modeling was used to estimate the association between death and breast-feeding initiation time. Analysis was based on 22,838 breast-fed newborns surviving to 48 h. Within 1 h of birth, 3.4% of infants were breast-fed and 56.6% were breast-fed within 24 h of birth. Partially breast-fed infants (72.6%) were at higher mortality risk [relative risk (RR) = 1.77; 95% CI = 1.32-2.39] than those exclusively breast-fed. There was a trend (P = 0.03) toward higher mortality with increasing delay in breast-feeding initiation. Mortality was higher among late (> or = 24 h) compared with early (< 24 h) initiators (RR = 1.41; 95% CI = 1.08-1.86) after adjustment for low birth weight, preterm birth, and other covariates. Improvements in breast-feeding practices in this setting may reduce neonatal mortality substantially. Approximately 7.7 and 19.1% of all neonatal deaths may be avoided with universal initiation of breast-feeding within the first day or hour of life, respectively. Community-based breast-feeding promotion programs should remain a priority, with renewed emphasis on early initiation in addition to exclusiveness and duration of breast-feeding.
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            College smoking-cessation using cell phone text messaging.

            Although rates of smoking among college-aged students continue to rise, few interventions that focus on college smokers' unique motivations and episodic smoking patterns exist. The authors developed and evaluated a prototype program targeting college students that integrates Web and cell phone technologies to deliver a smoking-cessation intervention. To guide the user through the creation and initialization of an individualized quitting program delivered by means of cell phone text messaging, the program uses assessment tools delivered with the program Web site. Forty-six regular smokers were recruited from local colleges and provided access to the program. At 6-week follow-up, 43% had made at least one 24-hour attempt to quit, and 22% were quit--based on a 7-day prevalence criterion. The findings provide support for using wireless text messages to deliver potentially effective smoking-cessation behavioral interventions to college students.
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              Factors associated with the introduction of prelacteal feeds in Nepal: findings from the Nepal Demographic and Health Survey 2011

              Background A prelacteal feed is any food except mother’s milk provided to a newborn before initiating breastfeeding. Prelacteal feeding is a major barrier to exclusive breastfeeding. It is a prevalent practice in Nepal. Little is known about the factors associated with providing prelacteal feeds to the Nepalese newborn. This study explored the factors associated with providing prelacteal feeds to children under three years in Nepal using the Nepal Demographic and Health Survey (NDHS) 2011. Methods This study utilised the NDHS 2011 child dataset which is a nationally representative study. The rates of providing prelacteal feeds were reported as a proportion. Complex Sample Analysis method was used to account for the cluster design and sample weight of the study. Chi-square tests and multiple logistic regression were used to analyse the factors associated with providing prelacteal feeds. Results A sample of 3948 mothers were included in the study. A total of 841 [26.5% (95% CI: 23.1%–30.3%)] weighted proportion) of mothers reported of providing prelacteal feeds to their newborn infants. Plain water (n = 75), sugar/glucose (n = 35), gripe water (n = 3), sugar/salt solution (n = 3), fruit juice (n = 3), infant formula (n = 96), tea (n = 3) and other milk other than breast milk (n = 556) were some of the types of prelacteal feeds reported. The multiple regression analysis showed that the mothers who had no education, were not working, were from the middle wealth quintile, who had not attended four antenatal care visits, were first time mothers and who were from the Terai/Plain region were more likely to provide prelacteal feeds. Conclusions Given that one in four infants were provided with prelacteal feeds, there is a need to implement breastfeeding promotion programs to increase the practice of exclusive breastfeeding and reduce prelacteal feeding practices. Breastfeeding counseling at antenatal clinics and peer support for exclusive breastfeeding should be included as part of breastfeeding promotion programs. Mobilisation of female community health volunteers for peer counseling is also a feasible option for Nepal.

                Author and article information

                +61293514803 , myat.panhmone@sydney.edu.au
                BMC Med Inform Decis Mak
                BMC Med Inform Decis Mak
                BMC Medical Informatics and Decision Making
                BioMed Central (London )
                4 June 2016
                4 June 2016
                : 16
                Sydney School of Public Health, Sydney Medical School, The University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW 2006 Australia
                © The Author(s). 2016

                Open AccessThis article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

                Funded by: Post Gradate Research Support Scheme, Sydney Medical School, University of Sydney
                Funded by: Australian Leadership Awards, Australain Agency for International Development,Australain Government
                Research Article
                Custom metadata
                © The Author(s) 2016

                Bioinformatics & Computational biology
                qualitative formative research,mhealth,text messaging,pregnant woman,service providers,exclusive breastfeeding,infant feeding practices,randomized controlled trial intervention,nutrition,myanmar


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