top of page


Supports Healthy PA Goals 

  • Current healthcare system needs to increase professional breastfeeding support: utilization of  IBCLC services is best practice and cost containment.

  • Prevention is key and breastfeeding support is primary healthcare prevention.

  • Breastfeeding helps to promote personal responsibility by empowering mothers to care for themselves and their infants.

PA Breastfeeding Mothers and Babies Lack Access to Appropriate Care

Without timely, skilled, and knowledgable breastfeeding support babies are weaned.

  • 60% of mothers wean before they want to.

  • The 2010 Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System (PRAMS) from the Centers for Disease Prevention indicate that only 60.2% of mothers in Pennsylvania were still breastfeeding at 4 weeks after delivery. That is 40% of the mothers we help don’t make it through the first month. The same research showed lass than half are still breastfeeding at 8 weeks.

  • U.S. Surgeon General recommends 8.6 IBCLCs per 1,000 deliveries; we need 1210 IBCLCs but we only have 662.

WIC Does Not Provide This Service

  • Around 71% of WIC participants are on Medicaid.

  • Medicaid insured have increased breastfeeding barriers. 

  • Medicaid providers often refer their patients to WIC peer counselors for lactation support who have 24 -48 hours of training in basic support. When peer counselor support and lactation consultant support are both available breastfeeding rates are more positively influenced.

  • Most WIC offices do not have lactation consultants available routinely for their clients. 

There is Consumer Confusion in the Marketplace

The consumer often doesn't know the difference between types of breastfeeding support:

  • International Board Certified Lactation Consultant

  • WIC Peer Counselor

  • La Leche League Leader

  • Certified Lactation Counselor

  • Breastfeeding Counselor

The Womens Preventive Services Initiative: Breastfeeding Services and Supplies

Recommendations include providing education, breastfeeding counseling, peer support and lactation consultation for successful breastfeeding.  

What would licensure do?


Licensure is an essential initial step to enable third party coverage within the health care system through Medicaid and private insurers.

Licensure will provide consumers, health care providers, insurance personnel and employers with the ability to identify qualified lactation consultants.

For Families: 

Reimbursement that may follow, promotes access to timely, skilled, competent and culturally relevant clinical lactation support for ALL families.

For Employers and Employees: 

Licensure will provide a means of standardizing practice and oversight of lactation professionals which addresses employer liability that can lead to increased employment opportunities.

For Equity:

States with licensure have demonstrated increased growth and diversification of the profession. This is because educational programs for lactation consulting in post-secondary institutions became available or fluorished, and there were increased opportunities for financial aid t for individuals asspiring to ender the profession. 

Physicians are concerned with 'negligent referral' liability

  • Do not have training on the various support providers.

  • Unable to identify quality lactation services providers.

bottom of page