The IBCLC® is the national standard in clinical lactation care.
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Advocacy in Action
October 13, 2016
AAP Georgia Chapter Announces IBCLC Licensure to its Members in Newsletter

In the recent issue of the "Georgia Pediatrician," the Georgia Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics announced to its members that licensure of IBCLCs is underway in Georgia, the second state to sign into law an IBCLC licensure bill.  As stewards of information that is pertinent to pediatricians in its state, the Georgia chapter felt it prudent to explain why licensure is important to the IBCLC as well as to breastfeeding families.  They wisely included a quick overview of their state's breastfeeding data to bring attention to Georgia's 19% rate of exclusive breastfeeding at 6 months, a figure that is sure to grab even a casual reader's attention.  By providing this information to their members practively, they have helped to spread the word about why IBCLC licensure is important to the families they serve as well as the IBCLCs practicing in their state.  Read more here
Photo Credit Annie Franklin.  Used with permission.  

Updated --- The Costs of Suboptimal Breastfeeding in the United States

Recently, the journal Maternal and Child Nutrition published an updated version of the landmark studies which calculated the costs of Suboptimal Breastfeeding in the U.S. by Bartick et al.  Download the open access article here .
The new version contains information on both maternal and pediatric health outcomes in relation to breastfeeding status and updates the diseases used to calculate the health costs of not breastfeeding.

The authors concluded that "Suboptimal breastfeeding is associated with considerable health impact, and cost in the United States has a larger impact on women's health than previously appreciated.  Efforts to enable more families to breastfeed may need to be realigned to focus more on women's health."  

USLCA understands that the IBCLC is optimally positioned to address this need.  With comprehensive, documented experience and technical knowledge, the IBCLC focuses on the best plan of care for each client with unqavering dedication the the health of the breastfeeding dyad.  Through compassionate understanding of unique and personal situations, the IBCLC provides clinical guidance to help breastfeeding families overcome barriers and meet their goals for optimal breastfeeding.  Raising the rates of optimal breastfeeding in the United States will require the combined efforts of many healthcare providers and all lactation support providers.  The IBCLC is poised to remain a pivotal piece of this complex equation by being a resource for others working to increase rates and duraiton of breastfeeding and by providing direct care to breastfeeding families in multiple settings throughout the nation. 

Where Can I Find That Document About IBCLCs?

Do you write policies, scholarly articles, or blogs about lactation? Do you often ask yourself "Now where can I find something that demonstrates the efficacy of the IBCLC?" Do you ever need a quick reference about how best to represent what an IBCLC does?
Well, wonder no more!  Here are some quick reminders about how to find the great information you need to get the job done! 

  •  USLCA has many excellent, referenced documents regarding the purpose and efficacy of the IBCLC and licensure of the IBCLC.  Each document is fully referenced with citations you can use.  Think of the references as a list of documents to which you can then refer for additional helpful resources.  For example, the USLCA publication "Efficacy of the IBCLC: Recommendations and Evidence" contains 50 references!  You can read and download USLCA's publications by clicking here 
  •  As a member (any level, including student) you have access to the entire archive of the journal Clinical Lactation!  This journal has long been a rich resource filled with references to how IBCLCs practice, their effects on the care of breastfeeding families, and excellent explanations of how best to utilize the services of an IBCLC.  The Clinical Lactation site is accessible through the USLCA website and is a completely searchable database.  Click here to access the Clinical Lactation site.
  •  Set yourself a Google Alert on the term "IBCLC" so you never miss a new piece of research or mention of the IBCLC in the popular news.  
  •  If you find yourself in need of a document you can't seem to put a finger on, harness the power of social media by posting on our Facebook page.  Ask your question and watch the lactation world lend a hand with suggestions and ideas!   

Please share with us when your piece is published!  Highlighting the efforts of IBCLCs in all areas of lactation is a key component to marketing the IBCLC and ensuring that the IBCLC is recognized as the national standard in clinical lactation care.  

The IBCLC in Research

 The mission of USLCA is to advance the IBCLC within the United States through leadership, advocacy, professional development and research. We continue to see the IBCLC involved in clinical research across the nation and the world.  By conducting clinical research as part of collaborative and multidisciplinary teams, writing research proposals, performing systematic reviews of published evidence, and more, IBCLCs are advancing the science of human lactation.  The inclusion of the IBCLC in a clinical research team is an excellent opportunity to increase public awareness of the role and skills of the IBCLC.  
A recent study published by Ghaheri et al in the journal The Laryngoscope demonstrates this clearly.  The peer-reviewed article "Breastfeeding Improvement Following Tongue-Tie and Lip-Tie Release: A Prospective Cohort Study" includes in its explanation of methodology the following statements:
  • All infants were initially evaluated by community lactation consultants [IBCLCs] before surgical referral as a prerequisite for consultation by the principal investigator. The latch assessment by the lactation consultant was considered in the decision- making process in whether a frenotomy was offered.  
This utilization of the skillset of the IBCLC, as well as the direct acknowledgement within the article that IBCLC care was a requisite component of the intervention is a clear and forward-thinking example of how the IBCLC fits in the healthcare team.  Multidisciplinary work among healthcare and wellness providers is often the cornerstone of establishing new paradigms and making new discoveries.  Dr. Ghaheri and colleagues are to be commended for their inclusion of IBCLC consultation in both the care of dyads as well as in the decision on performing an intervention.  You can read the full study here.
Have you seen other recent articles which demonstrate the importance of the inclusion of the IBCLC on a care team for a breastfeeding parent and/or breastfed baby?  Please share it with us by emailing!  
Upcoming Live Webinar from USLCA:
Overcoming Staff Resistance to the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative
Educating hospital staff on the Baby-Friendly journey is one of the key components to designation.  Changing processes and procedures can strain even the most dedicated and committed hospital staff.  This webinar will discuss ways to communicate clearly and support staff in making the changes necessary to create the desired environment of care for families and babies in your hospital and supplement your existing active listening and counseling skills.  This webinar is appropriate for hospital education departments, lactation staff including IBCLCs, nursing staff, administrators, and all who are involved in a facility's Baby-Friendly journey.   


October 26, 2016*, 60 Minutes
12 pm Eastern (11 am Central, 10 am Mountain, 9 am Pacific)
*this webinar WILL be recorded

Cost:                                             Members: $15                      Non-members: $30

Number of CERPs & CNEs:        1 L CERP and 1 CNE

Presenter:    Ingrid Dixon, BSN, RN, IBCLC           

1. By the end of the webinar, participants will be able to identify two common errors in communication.
2. By the end of the webinar, participants will be able to identify skills for active listening.
3. By the end of the webinar, participants will be able to describe how to implement incremental changes to work towards a desired goal.
Ingrid is an RN, IBCLC. She is a clinical instructor at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, and manages the Outpatient Lactation Clinic. She serves as Assistant Director of the Oklahoma Breastfeeding Resource Center, a statewide resource for healthcare providers and organizations working to improve the care of nursing mothers and children.

Why Licensure for the IBCLC®?

Licensure of the IBCLC provides an avenue to advance the profession to a higher level of recognition. This can help to obtain a seat at the table at the policy level. If we are to truly make changes and improve lactation care and services for all mothers, then the IBCLC needs to be contributing to policy making whether in the hospital setting or at state and federal levels. In order for the voice of the IBCLC to be heard, the IBCLC needs to be a known and accepted member of the health care team. Licensure lends an aura of respectability and accountability to a profession whose services are sorely needed by families of all incomes.

For additional information and supporting documentation, please visit our website at

What You Can Do to Help Market the IBCLC

Making information easily available for our members to share within their own networks is one of our marketing committee’s objectives.  We enjoy your active participation on our Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest platforms, and we would love to have you help us grow our Instagram presence!  Please contact our Director of Marketing, Christine Staricka, at if you can contribute to our marketing efforts on social media and elsewhere!  

Membership in Your Professional Association

We keep our members' needs and wants foremost in our work and in our plans.  Our members are the reason we exist, and we want you, our members, to feel valued, to be recognized, and to feel that your membership dollars bring you incredible benefits.  As your professional association and the ONLY organization working to advocate for the IBCLC® in the United States, we work diligently on your behalf. USLCA offers unmatched member benefits.  With this in mind, we have worked this past year to add benefits like 8 free CERPs per year, updated professional advocacy documents, a Member Marketplace where you can advertise your services and products to other members, and an optimized and mobile-ready website that works better for you AND is designed to appear higher in online searches.  We are creating an exciting new member affinity program to save you money. 
We work hard to keep costs down.  We offer multiple levels of membership.  We have annual and monthly payment options, making USLCA membership even easier on your budget.

Current Membership Rates: 
Contributing Professional* $109/year
Monthly* $9/month
Individual* $85/person
Group $75/person (Group of 5 or more)
Student $43/person

You might find that you can easily build a group of 5 for group membership by gathering colleagues in your practice group, your WIC site, your hospital lactation team, your local breastfeeding coalition, or any other network of lactation professionals you know!  

Click Here to Join, Renew, or Learn More!

*If your membership is set up for auto renewal, the current rates will be reflected on your renewal date.  

Copyright © 2016 United States Lactation Consultant Association, All rights reserved.

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