The study name “IBAMI” stands for Improving Breastfeeding support to treat Acute Malnutrition amongst Infants under 6 months. IBAMI is both a pilot study and a sub-study of The CHAIN Network. The project is driven by Dr. Martha Mwangome (front row, 3rd from the left) and her dedicated team.
With fresh wings and a solid leadership, the study has taken off. Its main objective is to explore the role of breastfeeding in infants recovering from acute malnutrition. Being under 6 months of age, these children are both very young and vulnerable, yet they are understudied. Therefore, IBAMI was designed to specifically understand:
- How many infants admitted to hospital with moderate or severe malnutrition were being successfully breastfed or not?
- How many infants being treated for malnutrition are able to exclusively breastfeed and are they able to maintain this after discharge from hospital?
- Whether exclusive breastfeeding is sufficient for catch-up growth and whether it helps infants survive?
In preparation for the study kick-off, the IBAMI team underwent intense training including practical sessions that covered all aspects of Lactation Management. The training was organized by UNICEF in collaboration with the Ministry of health of Kenya.
The IBAMI team has since successfully carried out several wet-runs and have tested the tools and operating procedures. This project has officially taken off, and participants are being recruited. The CHAIN Network is excited to see the efforts of this team and hope the knowledge gained from this project will help undernourished infants recuperate more easily from a bout of illness.