A Qualitative Assessment of Mothers' Experience With Pediatric Anemia Care in Arequipa, Peru

Paola Louzado-Feliciano, Brianna Vargas, Madhavi Dandu, Shannon Fuller, Nicole Santos, Ángela Quiñones, Holly M. Martin, Alberto J. Caban-Martinez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Despite national efforts to control pediatric anemia in Peru, each year, 67.4% of all newborns are diagnosed with anemia during their first year of life. The literature on Peruvian mothers' understanding and beliefs of pediatric anemia is limited. In the present study, we aimed to understand mother's perspective of pediatric anemia and explore their perceptions on how to prevent and treat anemia in Peru. Methods: During May–June 2018, we administered a short demographic questionnaire and conducted language-sensitive interviews with mothers of children clinically diagnosed with anemia in three different governmental health centers in Arequipa, Peru. Interviews were audio-recorded and transcribed verbatim. We used the Framework Analysis approach to analyze qualitative data. Results: A total of 14 Peruvian mothers were interviewed. Across interviews, three main themes emerged: (I) Mothers' Understanding of Pediatric Anemia; (II) Attitudes about Provider Recommendations for Pediatric Anemia Control; and (III) Barriers to Effective Pediatric Anemia Control. Peruvian mothers expressed skepticism toward national pediatric anemia guidelines as they believe recommendations received at health clinics jeopardized their children's overall health. Participants identified several barriers to effective anemia control: limited and confusing health information received during pediatric healthcare appointments, lack of systematic protocols in health clinics, and inconsistent referral processes. Conclusion: We identified factors that limit the acceptance of current pediatric anemia control guidelines followed at governmental health centers in Arequipa, Peru. Understanding maternal beliefs concerning pediatric anemia can guide future anemia control guidelines at the primary care level for pediatric patients in Peru.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number598136
JournalFrontiers in Public Health
StatePublished - Dec 16 2020


  • South America
  • anemia
  • malnutrition
  • pediatrics
  • primary health care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


Dive into the research topics of 'A Qualitative Assessment of Mothers' Experience With Pediatric Anemia Care in Arequipa, Peru'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this