Breastfeeding practices among working mothers at the workplace in Erbil city: A cross-sectional study


  • Shelan Mustafa Ali Erbil Directorate of Health, Erbil, Iraq.
  • Abubakir Majeed Saleh 1. Department of Community Medicine, College of Medicine, Hawler Medical University, Erbil, Iraq. - 2. Faculty of Nursing, Tishk International University, Erbil, Iraq.



Breastfeeding, Working mother, Erbil city


Background and objective: Breastfeeding is a fundamental human activity, essential to child and maternal health, and of massive economic value to societies and households. This study aimed to determine breastfeeding practices among working mothers in Erbil city.

Methods: A cross-sectional study was carried out in 12 primary health care centers in Erbil city from 19 January 2020 to 10 December 2020. A convenience sampling method was used to recruit the sample of the study (600 mothers). A questionnaire was used for data collection.

Results: A total of 600 working mothers with children 1-2 years of age who attended the selected primary health centers were included in this study. Most participants (58.8%) were in the age group 30-39 years old. The majority of mothers (69.7%)were working in the public sector, while 32% were working in hospitals. Only 66 participants were breastfeeding their child in the workplace, so the prevalence of breastfeeding among working mothers at the workplace was 11%. Only 100 participants (16.7%) reported having a nursery in their workplace. Regarding the impact of the workplace on breastfeeding, 42% of women were breastfeeding in places with a nursery. Breastfeeding is more common among mothers working in public places (13.9%) than mothers working in private sectors (4.4%) (P <0.001).

Conclusion: The prevalence of breastfeeding among working mothers with children 1-2 years of age is low. The availability of supporting facilities significantly impacts breastfeeding practices among working mothers.


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How to Cite

Ali, S. M., & Saleh, A. M. (2022). Breastfeeding practices among working mothers at the workplace in Erbil city: A cross-sectional study. Zanco Journal of Medical Sciences (Zanco J Med Sci), 26(1), 49–57.



Original Articles