Updated 2021 July 24th
A general term - lactation consultant
The term “lactation consultant” is a little bit generic. It is often used in reference to IBCLCs, but lactation consultants can be professionals of varying levels. I think of it like nursing. We say “nurse” when we are talking about RNs or LPNs or NPs or other types of advanced-practice nurse. The label nurse can be used for an RN with their ADN or BSN or MSN. We use the same broad term for all types of nurses, but we know the education level is different and we know the scope of practice is different for RNs in comparison to a LPN or a NP. They’re all nurses though. An RN ADN working in L&D alongside a CNM are both nurses, but their abilities are different. With lactation consultants, there are IBCLCs. There are also CLCs and CBSs and a few other credentialed professionals. They all offer education and support with the ability to do clinical-level care and may be in private practice. They also have a different scope of practice. Same goal, same team, working together to help mothers and babies.
Let’s talk about how to become a lactation consultant and what the scope of practice is for the different types.
First, take a look at the blog on different types of lactation professionals.
Also check out the blog on lactation professional training programs.
Now that you’ve done that and seen which programs offer training on this level, let’s take a look at how to become a lactation consultant.
Lactation consultants are health professionals. Lactation consultancy is a specialty of women’s health.