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Breastfeeding Patterns Among Palestinian Infants In The First 6 Months In Nablus Refugee Camps

Journal Title, Volume, Page: 
J Hum Lact. 2012 May;28(2):196-202. doi: 10.1177/0890334411432715
Year of Publication: 
Samar Ghazal Musmar
Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, An-Najah National University, Nablus. Palestine
Current Affiliation: 
Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, An-Najah National University, Nablus. Palestine
Shaden Qanadeelu
Advanced Technology Lab, Nablus. Palestine
Preferred Abstract (Original): 

Background: Several studies in Palestine, including some performed in refugee camps, showed that breastfeeding is a common practice, however, exclusive breastfeeding was practiced less frequently. The social and cultural patterns in relation to different types of infant feeding were not studied.
Objectives: This study aimed to evaluate the association between mothers’ and infants’ sociodemographic factors and breastfeeding patterns during the first 6 months of infant life.
Methods: This cross-sectional study evaluated data of 690 clinic files from 3 refugee camps in Nablus, Palestine in 2007. Maternal age, age at marriage, parity, mother’s and father’s education, type of delivery and infant’s gender were studied in relation to 3 types of breastfeeding: exclusive breastfeeding, partial breastfeeding, and exclusive formula feeding in the first 6 months of life. Bivariate analysis and logistic regression were applied for data analysis.
Results: A total of 69.7% of infants aged 0–6 months were exclusively breastfed and only 14.3% were exclusively formula fed. Older mothers at marriage (risk ratio [RR], 0.13; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.06–0.28), and cesarean birth (RR, 0.59; 95% CI, 0.41–0.81) were negatively associated with EBF.
Conclusion: Breastfeeding educational and health promotion program and policy for EBF implemented by UNRWA (United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East) should continue with special attention to older mothers at marriage, and to babies born by cesarean section.'s picture

Major Depression Across West Bank: A ‎Cross-Sectional General Population Study ‎ ‎

Journal Title, Volume, Page: 
Int J Soc Psychiatry, vol.58 no.3, 315-322
Year of Publication: 
Adnan Lufti Sarhan
Faculty of Nursing, An-Najah, National University, Nablus, Palestine
Current Affiliation: 
Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences, Department of Biomedical Sciences, An-Najah National University, Nablus, Palestine
Michael G. Madianos
Department of Mental Health and Behavioural Sciences, School of Health Sciences University of Athens, Greece
Evmorfia Koukia
Faculty of Nursing, University of Athens, Greece
Preferred Abstract (Original): 

Background: In recent decades entire populations have been living under chronic strain, apprehension and violence. This is the case for Palestinians. Despite the increased volume of mass media attention on this situation, little is known about the psychological effects of this condition on this population.

Aims: The study was designed to investigate the lifetime and one-month prevalence of major depression episode (MDE) in a multi-stage sample of 916 adult Palestinians drawn from the Al-Aqsa Intifada.

Methods: The survey was based on personal interviews and was carried out from February to September 2007. The clinical examination used DSM-IV criteria for the detection of MDE, extracted from SCID-I. Data, suicidal behaviour, previous help seeking, medication use and exposure to trauma were also collected.

Results: Lifetime and one-month prevalence of MDE was found to be 24.3% and 10.6%, respectively. Male Palestinians suffered from slightly higher rates of MDE than their female counterparts, but this difference was not statistically significant. Being widowed and living in towns in West Bank also increased the likelihood to develop MDE. A comparison of prevalence rates in refugee and non-refugee populations showed no significant differences. This could be explained by the fact that though refugees were forcibly displaced, they were living among compatriots (non-refugees), thus both groups were experiencing the same sociopolitical adversities. Being also exposed to traumatic events increased the risk of suffering from MDE.

Conclusions: This study provides evidence that a population under continuous strain and apprehension, living in unremitting socioeconomic deprivation, is more likely to suffer from major depression.

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