Internationally Board Certified Lactation Consultants (IBCLCs) are an integral part of the healthcare team who work to triage and manage clinical lactation concerns for the mother, baby and family unit. IBCLCs do not have to be registered nurses to function in their role. (Some hospitals may require an IBCLC to also be a registered nurse.) This program is designed to prepare students to take the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners (IBLCE) certification exam. Candidates must pass the certification exam in order to use the IBCLC credential.
- Identify the anatomy of the breast and hormones necessary for milk production.
- Identify nutritional needs of the baby and breastfeeding mother.
- Discuss ways to promote effective breastfeeding using evidenced-based principles.
- Perform a comprehensive breast assessment.
- Identify the impact of culture on breastfeeding.
- Apply ethical and legal principles in the care of the breastfeeding mother.
- Identify potential breastfeeding complications and interventions.
Internationally Board Certified Lactation Consultants may be employed in hospitals and outpatient breastfeeding clinics, or work in the community in WIC offices, for home-visiting agencies, in private physician offices, or they may have their own private practice. In these roles, they may work with other lactation consultants, write policy for their organization, provide education for other health care providers, lead breastfeeding support groups, and man warm lines.
Applicants considering a career as a lactation consultant should be aware that during their course of study and in subsequent employment in the field, they are likely to work in situations where exposure to infectious disease is possible. This is an occupational risk for all health care workers. Persons should not become health care workers unless they recognize and accept this risk. Proper education and strict adherence to well established infection-control guidelines, can reduce the risk to a minimum. Thorough education in infection control procedures is an important part of the lactation consultant program of study.
Early recognition of sensitization to natural rubber latex (NRL) is crucial to prevent the occurrence of life-threatening reactions in sensitized healthcare workers. The program faculty strongly advises that students sensitized or allergic to latex consult a physician for guidance on the merits of continuing in a health care career. NRL sensitized students who choose to continue in the lactation consultant program must notify the program director.
Upon completion of the lactation consultant certificate program, students are eligible to take the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners (IBLCE) certification exam.
The program is 42 credit hours
The Lactation Consultant Program-Henry Ford College Pathway 2 program had a site visit on April 9, 2019 in pursuit of initial accreditation by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs, www.caahep.org. This step in the process is neither a status of accreditation nor a guarantee that accreditation will be granted.
It is strongly recommended that AH-100 and BIO-134 are completed before AH-121. Additionally, acceptance to the lactation consultant program is contingent upon fulfilling and maintaining minimum program requirements and proof of the following:
- Health Insurance
- Physical examination
- TB testing/screening
- Immunizations as required
- Titers to assure immunity for specific conditions
- American Heart Association (AHA) BLS for Healthcare Professionals certification
- Must pass drug screening on first test
- Criminal background check
Students must maintain a valid American Heart Association (AHA), Basic Life Support for Healthcare Provider card throughout the Practicums. May be fulfilled by taking AH-105: Basic Life Support for Healthcare Providers