Currently, the barriers to appropriate infant feeding practices are largely unknown in the Central River Division of the Gambia. A questionnaire was developed and implemented by a local Non Governmental Organization (NGO), the Gambia Food and Nutrition Agency, in order to gain more information and ultimately to improve the child mortality rate of the country. There were two participant groups: 88 Doers who are women who had adopted the appropriate complementary feeding practice guidelines as defined by the World Health Organization and 87 Non Doers who are women who had in some way strayed from the appropriate complementary feeding practice guidelines. The questionnaire included aspects of the Health Belief Model which can be used in the development of a future intervention. The Yes/No questions were analyzed using the Chi-square statistical method and the open-ended questions used a descriptive analysis method of evaluation. The constructs for perceived susceptibility, perceived action efficacy, perceived self efficacy, cues for action and perception of divine showed significant differences between the Doers and the Non Doers (p<0.05). The descriptive analysis revealed that both participant groups had a limited understanding of the preventative qualities of the adoption of appropriate complementary feeding practices. The women in both of groups also showed a strong perception of divine will. Women in the Central River Division perceive their husband and in-laws to be the most influential in the decision-making process regarding infant feeding practices. Recommendations for future interventions must acknowledge the importance and influence of the community surrounding the women in their adoption of the appropriate infant feeding practices. It would also be important to educate women about of the specific guidelines of the appropriate complementary feeding practices, specifically the delay in early initiation of complementary feeding. The results of this barrier analysis provide useful information to plan and implement an effective intervention to improve the child mortality rate in the Gambia.
|Advisor:||Martin, Jeanne B.|
|Commitee:||Morandi, Maria T.|
|School:||The University of Texas School of Public Health|
|Department:||Health Promotion & Behavioral Sciences|
|School Location:||United States -- Texas|
|Source:||MAI 45/06M, Masters Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Womens studies, Nutrition, Public health|
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