Poster Presentation

Tuesday, November 6, 2007
9:45 AM - 11:00 AM

Tuesday, November 6, 2007
1:00 PM - 2:15 PM
This presentation is part of : MCH Invited Posters
Using Technology to Develop a Community Alliance for Breastfeeding Cyber-Support
Leslie MacTaggart Myers, MSN, RN and Betsy M. McDowell, PhD, RN, CCRN. Department of Nursing, Lander University, Greenwood, SC, USA
Learning Objective #1: describe the steps in developing a comprehensive, community-based multi-disciplinary partnership for breastfeeding support.
Learning Objective #2: state some of the techniques for establishing a technology-based cyber-alliance for coordinated breastfeeding support.

Greenwood County, SC was home to a past breastfeeding coalition comprised of members of La Leche League (LLL), healthcare providers, and mothers. However, when LLL in Greenwood disbanded, so did the coalition. Currently, there is no coordination between providers or services. Greenwood needs an alliance to pool resources, provide efficient breastfeeding support, assess population needs, collaborate on interventions, and publicly acknowledge breastfeeding support. With the current fragmented delivery of breastfeeding support services, families are missing out on many opportunities. To really impact the breastfeeding rates in our area, the entire community must come together in partnership toward meeting South Carolina goal. With a strong community-based alliance, Greenwood will be positioned to begin the process of identifying issues and addressing them to allow mothers to be successful in breastfeeding. The coalition in development through the STTI and Johnson & Johnson Maternal-Child Health Leadership Academy is the Greenwood Alliance for Breastfeeding Cyber-support (Greenwood ABCs) and serves a very different role. The new group is a collaborative effort of the total community and is technology-based. The major obstacles to the previous coalition were attendance and financial needs. The Greenwood ABCs is web-based with live chat capabilities, discussion boards, email lists, and an electronic newsletter. The major benefit to this format is accessibility. Members are able to participate at their convenience. Also, with a technology-based application, both professionals and community citizens have access to the website and a wealth of information. The project results will serve as a model for other communities facing similar challenges, to demonstrate how nurses can use evidence-based practice to make a difference in their communities, to contribute to the professional literature in an area with limited empirical evidence, and to improve the health of infants and families in a rural county.