HealthDay News — Pediatricians’ recommendations and practices regarding breastfeeding became more closely aligned with American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) policy from 1995 to 2014, according to a study published online in Pediatrics.

Lori Feldman-Winter, MD, from Rowan University in Camden, NJ, and colleagues analyzed data from the Periodic Survey of Fellows, a nationally representative survey of AAP members, to assess pediatricians’ practices and attitudes about breastfeeding.

The researchers found that from 1995 to 2014, more pediatricians reported their affiliated hospitals applied for “baby-friendly” designation (P <.05), and more reported that they recommend exclusive breastfeeding (P <.05).

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However, attitudes about the likelihood of breastfeeding success have worsened (P <.05). Younger pediatricians reported lower confidence in managing breastfeeding problems, compared to older pediatricians (P <.01).

“These two divergent trends indicate that even as breastfeeding rates continue to rise, continued efforts to enhance pediatricians’ training and attitudes about breastfeeding are necessary,” the authors write.

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Feldman-Winter L, Szucs K, Milano A, Gottschlich E, Sisk B, Schanler RJ. National trends in pediatricians’ practices and attitudes about breastfeeding: 1995 to 2014 [published online September 18, 2017]. Pediatrics. doi: 10.1542/peds.2017-1229