University Hospitals MacDonald Women’s Hospital Recognized for Excellence in Lactation Care
Tuesday, August 13, 2013
The International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners® (IBLCE®) and International Lactation Consultant Association® (ILCA®) have recognized University Hospitals MacDonald Women’s Hospital for excellence in lactation care.
UH MacDonald Women’s Hospital has received the IBCLC Care Award in recognition for having professionals on staff who hold the prestigious International Board Certified Lactation Consultant® certification (IBCLC®) and providing a dedicated lactation support program that is available 5-7 days a week. In addition, the facility demonstrated that it provided training for staff members caring for breastfeeding families, and implemented activities that protect, promote, and support breastfeeding.
According to Liz Brooks, President of ILCA, “This recognition highlights the efforts being made by maternity facilities all across the world to help mothers get off to a good start with breastfeeding, and to support them in reaching their goals. IBCLC is the only internationally recognized lactation certification in the world, and IBCLC certificants are highly skilled in helping mothers with the questions and concerns that can arise. They are also an important part of the overall maternal and child health team by assuring that evidence-based policies and practices are in place that help mothers succeed with breastfeeding.”
Rebecca Mannel, Chair of IBLCE, echoes those sentiments. “Facilities that receive the IBCLC Care Award are to be commended for improving maternal and child health by making breastfeeding a priority and for taking steps to improve breastfeeding support. An important part of providing excellent breastfeeding care is having expert assistance available when the breastfeeding couplet needs it. IBCLC professionals are the health care professionals best suited to provide this help and often make the difference between success and failure for women achieving their breastfeeding goals,” she said.
IBLCE certificants focus on preventive care, so they are available during pregnancy to assess the mother and provide information on successfully initiating breastfeeding. They continue that assistance after the baby is born by helping mothers overcome breastfeeding challenges, providing accurate information, and continuing to support them as their baby grows. They assist mothers returning to work or school, help mothers in more unusual situations such as breastfeeding more than one baby or nursing a sick or premature infant, and help train nursing staff to manage basic breastfeeding care.
As allied health care professionals with the only internationally recognized certification for professional lactation services, IBCLC professionals work in hospitals, clinics, public health agencies, private practice, community settings, government agencies, and in research. There are currently more than 26,000 such professionals in 94 countries worldwide that are certified by the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners® (www.iblce.org), a program accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA). NCCA accreditation represents a mark of quality for certification programs.
“Breastfeeding rates are on the rise today and with that dramatic increase the need for trained professionals who can help also increases. Breastfeeding is natural and often works quite well without intervention. But there can be complications or risk factors and mothers need extra support. An IBCLC is the trained expert who knows how to work with the entire health care team so that a mother’s breastfeeding goals can be met,” says Brooks.
To learn more, visit www.ilca.org.