n Africa Journal of Nursing and Midwifery - Knowledge and attitudes of HIV-Positive women regarding exclusive breastfeeding - research

Volume 21 Number 2
  • ISSN : 1682-5055



Prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV is one of the primary strategies towards elimination of the HIV pandemic. Part of the mother-to-child transmission strategy is exclusive breastfeeding, which is fundamental for the survival of HIV-exposed infants, as breast milk remains the vital source of essential nutrients for infant growth. Unfortunately, exclusive breastfeeding comes with the risk of mother-to-child transmission of HIV if not practised correctly. Moreover, there were several amendments of the infants feeding guidelines before the study was initiated, which brought about a need to ascertain the need for advocacy and health education. To assess the current knowledge and attitudes of HIV-positive women regarding exclusive breastfeeding in the Mopani district (greater Letaba sub-district), South Africa, a quantitative, descriptive study was conducted. Probability sampling was used to sample the sites and non-probability sampling was used to sample the respondents in this study. A self-developed structured questionnaire was used to collect data from 123 respondents. The study concluded that HIV-positive women have good knowledge of and positive attitudes to exclusive breastfeeding. However, knowledge of HIV transmission during breastfeeding is still a challenge. Therefore, continuous evidence-based strategic interventions to increase the knowledge of HIV-positive women are still important in the fight against the pandemic.

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