Revisions to IBCLC Scope of Practice and Clinical Competencies

As is a certification best practice, and based on the data from the most recent IBCLC®Practice Analysis, IBLCE® has updated the Scope of Practice for International Board Certified Lactation Consultant® (IBCLC) Certificants as well as the Clinical Competencies for the Practice of International Board Certified Lactation Consultants (IBCLCs).
The process to update these key documents included a careful review of the most recent practice analysis by the IBLCE Certification Committee, comprised of IBCLCs from around the globe including three Board members and four additional Committee members, as well as taking into consideration feedback from IBCLCs during an open public comment period conducted in all IBCLC examination languages in 2018.
The data from the practice analysis responses and the comments from IBCLCs during the comment period militated in favour of only modest changes to the Scope of Practice and Clinical Competencies documents. Specifically, changes to these documents are reflective of current practice and include the following:

  • Emphasis is being added to the assessments and skills needed to address child(ren) specific needs.
  • Additional information is included in the Scope of Practice regarding the IBCLC’s role in providing breastfeeding and lactation care in relationship to maternal and child health and mental health.
  • Additional information is included in the Clinical Competencies about the safe handling, storage and use of human milk; breastfeeding during an infant separation; the relationship between foods and breastfeeding; and breastfeeding in public.
  • Language is being updated to reflect gender neutrality.

Additionally, given IBLCE’s previous transition to the use of British English, revisions were made to reflect this change. The updated versions of these documents can be found on the IBLCE website.

IBLCE sincerely thanks all of the volunteers who played a part in this important process, as well as the over 100 IBCLCs who provided valuable feedback during the public comment period and which IBLCE carefully reviewed.