This analysis examines breastfeeding data nationally as well as by ethnicity, deprivation level and District Health. Plunket sees approximately 85% of the population of new babies, so approximately 15% of the new baby population will not be included in this dataset. 

Download Plunket Breastfeeding Data Analysis 2010 - 2015 PDF 28 pages, 1.41MB

You can also download Plunket Breastfeeding Data Analysis 2004 - 2009 PDF 28 pages, 1800KB

Research summary

  • Over time there has been a small increase in exclusive breastfeeding for three months and six months age groups. There is no significant change in overall exclusive and full breastfeeding rates combined.
  • There is an encouraging change in combined breastfeeding (exclusive, full & partial) at 6 months.
  • Māori and Pacific have lower breastfeeding rates than other ethnicities.
  • The higher the deprivation level the less likely the infant is exclusively breastfed.

The Well Child Tamariki Ora (WCTO) Quality Improvement Framework 2014 target for exclusive and full breastfeeding (68%) at 6 weeks age group was met by 9 of the 21 DHB areas in 2014-2015. The 2016 target (75%) was not met.

The WCTO Quality Improvement Framework 2016 target for exclusive & full breastfeeding (60%) at 3 months was met by 4 of the 21 DHB areas in 2014-2015.

The WCTO Quality Improvement Framework 2016 target (65%) for breastfeeding (exclusive, full & partial) at 6 months was met by 10 of the 21 DHB areas.

You can find the latest Well Child Tamariki Ora Quality Improvement Framework Report (2016) here. 

This research is important as breastfeeding has multiple health benefits for the New Zealand population. This research shows who is breastfeeding and who is less likely to breastfeed - therefore it enables an analysis of the breastfeeding population. From this, services, policy analysts, breastfeeding advocates can examine how to further improve breastfeeding rates among the general and sub-group populations.

Who might be interested in this research?

Parents, policy analysts, child and maternal service providers, media, students, lecturers.

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