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There is a sharp decline in breastfeeding rates in the early weeks post birth (McAndrew et al., 2013). Data from the infant feeding survey indicates that many mothers wish to continue breastfeeding but stop due to problems such as insufficient milk or pain associated with breastfeeding. Clinicians suggest that many of these problems could be resolved with support for two key skills: positioning and attachment and hand expression (Unicef UK, 2012).
We have developed an intervention to help mothers address these common problems and support mothers to master the key skills. The aim of the intervention was to enable mothers who wished to breastfeed to increase their confidence and ability to continue even if they encountered problems. To provide a potentially low-cost, high reach intervention that was accessible 24/7, the intervention has been developed in the form of a smartphone application. The first version of the app has been tested by a small sample of parents and health professionals. The feedback from these early studies has informed revisions to the app (B Skills V2). The objectives of this research project are to test the acceptability and user satisfaction of the B Skills V2 to breastfeeding mothers and their partners in Coventry, and to explore the potential of the app to increase breastfeeding rates in Coventry.
The ultimate aim of this intervention is to empower mothers to breastfeed for as long as they wish. An associated increase in breastfeeding duration would result in reduced incidence of maternal and infant disease. Furthermore, enabling mothers to meet their personal breastfeeding goals may reduce their risk of postnatal depression. Within this project the app will be offered to all eligible mothers in Coventry and we will be investigating whether use of the app can be associated with any improvement in breastfeeding rates at 6-8 weeks postnatal.
This project will test the acceptability of the app on two smartphone platforms (android and apple) which increases the potential reach of the intervention (it was previously only available for apple devices). The outcomes of this project will help to inform future funding applications to test the clinical and cost-effectiveness of offering the app on a larger scale.
The Centre for Technology Enabled Health Research (CTEHR) is delighted that Dr Katherine Brown, Reader in eHealth and Behaviour Change with CTEHR, will be presenting a seminar as part of its 2017 internal seminar series.
The Centre for Technology Enabled Health Research (CTEHR) have been involved in an innovative project launched by BBC Learning and the Wellcome Trust which is designed to get primary school children excited about science.
As part of a new strategy in Leicester, UK, people born overseas will be offered testing for certain infectious illnesses (tuberculosis, HIV and viral hepatitis) when they register with a GP in the city. We aim to find out whether offering early tests for these infectious illnesses in this way will result in GPs actually doing more tests and identifying more people with these infectious illnesses.
Delivering Excellent Care Every Day for People Living with Advanced Dementia: Namaste Care Intervention UK (2016-19) is led by the Association for Dementia Studies at the University of Worcester & focuses on developing the optimal every-day care intervention for people with advanced dementia in care homes based on the principles of Namaste Care developed by Joyce Simard.
Facial paralysis results in weakness of the facial muscles, typically on one side of the face, affecting the facial function, appearance and communication of emotions. The objective of the project is to develop a working prototype and trial (through proof-of concept clinical studies) an inconspicuous, non-invasive wearable device (indistinguishable from normal spectacles) that provides discreet feedback on facial muscle movement and helps patients to continuously practise facial muscle exercises.