Psychosocial and economic determinants of infant feeding intent by pregnant HIV infected women in Tshwane/Pretoria
To determine the extent to which stigma, disclosure and socio-economic factors would affect infant feeding choices made antenatally by pregnant HIV positive women after the routine PMTCT counseling process.
Patients and methods:
The antenatal feeding choices and determinants thereof among 293 HIV infected women were studied at four antenatal clinics in two Tshwane townships.
Seventy four percent of the study participants intended to formula feed whilst 26% planned to breastfeed or mixed feed their babies. Those women who intended to breastfeed had a lower active coping ability, (AOR, 0.88, 95% CI: 0.82-0.94) and had less confidence to disclose their status to partners or husbands (AOR 0.54, 95% CI: 0.30-0.99). In addition these women were more than twice as likely to be married (AOR 2.06, 95% CI: 1.03-4.12) and were twice as knowledgeable about HIV transmission through breastfeeding (AOR 2.11, 95% CI: 1.14-3.90).
Counselling on infant feeding choices among HIV infected women should be sensitive to numerous internal and external factors impacting on the decision. The support that HIV infected women receive on their infant feeding decisions will entail psychosocial, community wide interventions, and frequent counseling sessions to assist them in coping with and disclosing their status.
Joan Nteboheleng Matji, University of Pretoria
Dankwart F Wittenberg, University of Pretoria
Jennifer D Makin, University of Pretoria
Bridget Jeffery, University of Pretoria
Una E MacIntyre, University of Limpopo, Medunsa Campus
Brian WC Forsyth, Yale University
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Date published: 2008-10-30
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