Breastfeeding

From the extracted hospital data we found that mothers of Aboriginal infants were less likely (64.7%) to initiate breastfeeding compared to mothers of non-Aboriginal infants (75.2%). 

We also looked at breastfeeding duration. As Figure 1 shows, breastfeeding rates for the Gudaga infants declined rapidly in the first two months when compared with other infants in the same area health service and across NSW.

The Gudaga Study showed that mothers who were young, with low levels of education, and who smoked during pregnancy were less likely to initiate or establish breastfeeding than other mothers. At the time of the study there was little professional breastfeeding support available to mothers.

These findings suggest that mothers would benefit from greater support with breastfeeding immediately following the birth of their infant.