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Scaling Up Skills and Reliability of Breastfeeding Peer Counselors - 7 Years of Malaysian Experience

by Nadrah A. Arifin, MBBS, MPH, IBCLC
  • Duration: 60 Mins
  • Credits: 0.5 CERP, 0.5 L-CERP
  • Learning Format: Webinar
  • Handout: No
  • Origin: GOLD Lactation

The roles of peer counselors (PC) in breastfeeding support is important to reach mothers and families in community as they would bridge the gaps within the warm chain of breastfeeding support. However, challenges has overcome in many forms, especially their reliability in providing breastfeeding support skills and knowledge. Malaysian Breastfeeding Peer Counselors (MBfPC) program has started in 2010 to enhance breastfeeding support for Malaysian community. Its training syllabus were adapted and modulated to be culturally acceptable. More than 500 PCs were trained.

The original syllabus was continuously being revised prior to each training since Malaysia is multicultural with great diversity, with few adaptations of new tools to enhance the understanding among the trainees whom majority are not health personnel. MBfPC Association (MBfPCA) is responsible to reliability queries by other parties, thus overseen the needs for MBfPC training reform. Three training levels were introduced in 2016; entrance, advanced, and train-of-trainers; to increase reliability of certified PC, even though the sustainability of the network is yet to be observed. The mechanisms used to select, train and certify the PCs had strengthened the roles and functional relevancy of MBfPCA existence in Malaysian scenario. This presentation will share the challenges and framework of capacity building among PCs to function as breastfeeding peer supporters in Malaysian context.

Learning Objectives:

Objective 1: Acknowledge the challenges, social expectation and changing trends in breastfeeding support works among volunteers for the past years based on Malaysian experience;

Objective 2: Learn the importance of upgrading breastfeeding peer counselors’ skills to ensure reliability and sustainability for local breastfeeding support in peer counseling context;

Objective 3: Learn the mechanism used to plan for training upgrade to meet local expectations either from health professionals and the public in order to bridge the gaps and remain relevant;

Objective 4: Learn the importance of selecting PC candidates to uphold the principles of breastfeeding support works and noble intention by non-health personnel.

Presentations: 29  |  Hours / CE Credits: 26  |  Viewing Time: 8 Weeks