Knowledge and Practices of Breastfeeding Mothers regarding Protective Measures for their Neonates against COVID-19

Document Type : Original Article


Pediatrics Nursing Department, Faculty of Nursing, Ain Shams University-Cairo-Egypt


Background: Considering the benefits of breastfeeding and the role of breastfeeding in the
transmission of COVID-19, the mother can continue breastfeeding, while applying the necessary
protective measures. Aim: to assess knowledge and practices of breastfeeding mothers regarding
protective measures for their neonates from COVID-19. Design: A descriptive correlational design.
Subject: A convenient sample of 104 breastfeeding mothers and a purposive sample of their
hospitalized neonates. Setting: The NICUs at Maternity and Gynecological Hospital and Children's
Hospitals affiliated to Ain Shams University Hospital and Benha Specialized Pediatric Hospital
affiliated to Ministry of Health and Population. Tools: (1) Interviewing Questionnaire contained 3
categories: Characteristics of the studied mothers, breastfeeding history of mothers, knowledge of
mothers about COVID-19 & protective measures during breastfeeding, (2) Neonatal Medical
Record included characteristics of the studied neonates (3) Observational Checklists regarding hand
hygiene, wearing & removing face mask, respiratory hygiene, preventing coronavirus spread
practices, breastfeeding practice and milk expression. Results: less than three quarters of studied
mothers had unsatisfactory knowledge regarding protective measures of COVID-19 and more than
half of them had unsatisfactory practices regarding protecting their neonates from COVID19.
Conclusion: Findings of present study concluded that there was a statistical significant relation
between studied mothers' total knowledge and their education, age & job. Whereas, there was a
statistical significant relation between their total practice and their educational level and there was a
positive correlation between mothers' total knowledge and their total practice toward protective
measures for their neonates against COVID-19. Recommendations: designing and implementing
educational programs to improve mothers' knowledge and practices about protective measures of
COVID-19 during breastfeeding their neonates.