Subject Matter Experts Identify Health Equity Concerns in Breastfeeding for African American Women.

Author ORCiD Identifier

Spatz: 0000-0001-7316-6616

Publication Title

The Journal of perinatal & neonatal nursing

Document Type


PubMed ID



Although the rate of breastfeeding initiation in the United States has continued to rise since 1972, African American mothers continue to experience a significant disparity in initiation. The aim of this study was to explore the perceptions of the facilitators and barriers of breastfeeding initiation among African American mothers from the perspective of subject matter experts (SMEs). This study was part of a larger study that also involved focus group methodology with African American women. The purpose of this article is to describe the opinions, knowledge, and perceptions of SMEs who work with African American mothers. A semistructured interview guide was used to interview 7 SMEs at which point no new themes emerged from the data. SMEs highlighted the significance of modifiable factors in breastfeeding initiation decisions and validated many perceptions of African American mothers. SMEs identified many critical issues foundational to community perspective and shaping future success in raising breastfeeding initiation rates. To increase breastfeeding initiation rates among African American mothers, strategies beyond the individual level are necessary. SMEs recognize the importance of addressing fundamental issues related to historical perspectives, normalization, education, and disparities in breastfeeding as critical.



Publication Date


This document is currently not available here.