Abstract/Details

The effect of maternity leave length, other employment benefits, and job characteristics on breastfeeding initiation and duration


2009 2009

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Abstract (summary)

Background. Non-initiation and early cessation of breastfeeding have been attributed to work-related issues. Our objective was to determine the effect of employment benefits and characteristics on breastfeeding initiation and duration.

Methods. Data were from the 9-month and 2-year waves of the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study-Birth Cohort. Restricting our sample to singletons whose biological mothers were the respondents at the 9-month interview (unweighted n∼8,750), we classified postpartum employment status as full-time, part-time, and unemployed. Among those working in the 12 months before delivery (unweighted n∼6,150), we classified time of return to work after delivery (weeks) as 1-6, 7-12, ≥13, and not yet returned to work (by the 9-month interview). Analyses included chi-square tests, multiple logistic regressions and Cox proportional hazards models (SUDAAN 10). The mean observation period for any and exclusive breastfeeding was 24.5 and 10.5 months respectively.

Results. Of all mothers of singletons born in the US in 2001, 69.5% initiated breastfeeding with no differences by postpartum employment status. The rate of initiation was highest among women who had not yet returned to work (72.1%) and lowest among women returning within 1-6 weeks (referent group; 63.4%; p=0.0520). In adjusted analysis, full-time workers were 28% (95% CI=0.57-0.92) less likely to initiate breastfeeding compared to unemployed women. Women who had not yet returned to work had a 46% (95% CI=1.08-1.97) greater odds of initiation than the referent group. Full-time workers had a 19% (95%CI=1.01-1.40) greater risk of cessation of any breastfeeding compared to unemployed women. Women returning at ≥13 weeks had a 19% (95% CI=0.68-0.97) lower risk of cessation of any breastfeeding and a 22% (95% CI=0.63-0.96) lower risk of cessation of exclusive breastfeeding compared to the referent group. Women who had not yet returned to work had a 24% (95% CI=0.59-0.98) lower risk of cessation of exclusive breastfeeding compared to the referent group.

Conclusions. Full-time work shortly after delivery may negatively impact breastfeeding. Women returning later to work are more likely to initiate breastfeeding and breastfeed longer. Part-time options should be offered to women working postpartum. Policies enabling postpartum women to take sufficient time from work are sorely needed.

Indexing (details)


Subject
Public health
Classification
0573: Public health
Identifier / keyword
Health and environmental sciences; Breastfeeding; ECLS-B; Employment benefits; Initiation; Maternity leaves; Survival
Title
The effect of maternity leave length, other employment benefits, and job characteristics on breastfeeding initiation and duration
Author
Ogbuanu, Chinelo Amarachukwu
Number of pages
317
Publication year
2009
Degree date
2009
School code
0202
Source
DAI-B 70/04, Dissertation Abstracts International
Place of publication
Ann Arbor
Country of publication
United States
ISBN
9781109108200
Advisor
Glover, Saundra
Committee member
Hussey, James; Liu, Jihong; Probst, Janice
University/institution
University of South Carolina
Department
Health Srv Policy/Mng
University location
United States -- South Carolina
Degree
Ph.D.
Source type
Dissertations & Theses
Language
English
Document type
Dissertation/Thesis
Dissertation/thesis number
3352740
ProQuest document ID
304994457
Copyright
Database copyright ProQuest LLC; ProQuest does not claim copyright in the individual underlying works.
Document URL
http://search.proquest.com/docview/304994457
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