Objectives. This study examined the effectiveness of a hospital program to promote exclusive breastfeeding in Santos, Brazil.
Methods. In a prospective design, women who delivered at a hospital with an active breast-feeding promotion program (n = 236) were compared with women who delivered at a nearby control hospital (n = 206).
Results. The two groups had similar demographic characteristics and previous breast-feeding histories. Exposure to breast-feeding activities, assessed by maternal recall prior to discharge, was universally high at the program hospital and universally low at the control hospital. Multivariate, survival analysis showed that exclusive breast-feeding lasted 53 days longer among women who delivered at the program hospital.
Conclusions. Hospital-based breast-feeding promotion programs may be effective in extending the duration of exclusive breast-feeding.