Disparities in breastfeeding duration of New York City Latinx mothers by birth region

Lauren Gerchow, Allison Squires, Simon Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Disparities in breastfeeding patterns by race and ethnicity in the United States have been documented, and Latinx ethnicity is often associated with higher rates of breastfeeding initiation and longer breastfeeding duration compared to other U.S. racial and ethnic groups. Despite marked differences in infant feeding practices in Latinx countries of origin, U.S. breastfeeding data are routinely presented with Latinx as a single category. Objective: To analyze breastfeeding duration of New York City Latinx mothers by birth region. Methods: Using data from the 2016 New York City Work and Family Leave Survey (WAFLS) surveying residents who gave birth in 2014, we conducted a survival analysis of breastfeeding duration in a sample of Latinx-identifying mothers (n = 271), who reported having ever breastfed their child. Kaplan-Meier survival curves for time to breastfeeding cessation were created for four birth regions (United States, Caribbean, Mexico/Central America, and South America) and compared using the log-rank test. Adjusted hazard ratios (AHRs) were calculated using Cox regression. Results: Survival curves and median breastfeeding duration were significantly different between the four regions. AHR models found that non-Caribbean birthplace was significantly associated with a lower risk of early breastfeeding cessation. Being partnered at the time of childbirth and neonate hospitalization of 6 days or longer was associated with a greater risk of earlier breastfeeding cessation. Conclusion: The significant differences reinforce the need to separate breastfeeding findings by birth region in the Latinx population. Within-group differences are lost in combined analyses and reinforce conclusions that Latinx mothers have optimal breastfeeding behaviors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)607-613
Number of pages7
JournalBreastfeeding Medicine
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2021


  • Breastfeeding
  • Hispanic/Latinx
  • Immigrant health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics
  • Health Policy
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Maternity and Midwifery


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