HOW DO IBCLCs MAKE A DIFFERENCE?
IBCLCs Help Improve Breastfeeding Rates
A baby is 2.8 times more likely to be breastfeeding upon hospital discharge if the facility employs an IBCLC. Among women receiving Medicaid, delivering at a hospital that employed IBCLCs was associated with a 4X increase in the odds of breastfeeding at hospital discharge.
Women who receive prenatal education, postpartum hospital and home visits, and telephone calls from a lactation consultant, are more likely to breastfeed through week 20 and at a higher breastfeeding intensity than women who do not receive assistance from a lactation consultant.
IBCLCs Help Improve Health Outcomes for
Breastfeeding Mothers and Babies
Women are more likely to stop breastfeeding in the ﬁrst month when they experience such problems as sore nipples, inadequate milk production, and infant difﬁculties with breastfeeding. A lactation consultant can help women overcome these difﬁculties and thereby increase duration of breastfeeding.
IBCLCs Contribute To Lower Costs
Increased access to lactation consultants resulted in greater continuation of breastfeeding with cost savings to families, the healthcare system and government. Reduction in lifelong maternal and infant illnesses and conditions saves millions of dollars. The U.S. Breastfeeding Calculator shows Pennsylvania's annual cost savings of $4,592,386,630.00 for medical, non-medical costs and costs of death and 2600 lives saved.
IBCLCs Improve Consumer Satisfaction
By helping breastfeeding mothers and families to achieve their breastfeeding and lactation goals, IBCLCs improve the care of mothers and infants and consumer satisfaction with the health care team increases.
IBCLCs Improve an Institution's Image
Improvement of consumer satisfaction enhances any institution's competitive image. The availability of an IBCLC improves and institution's image as a breastfeeding friendly entity. This can increase the institution's consumer base and can be particularly helpful in meeting accreditation and quality measurement standards.
IBCLCs Improve Consumer Trust
IBCLCs are knowledgeable and ethical professionals who are bound by a code of ethics, scope of practice, and standards of practice. The credential is a privilege and revocable for cause. Thus, breastfeeding mothers, families, and communities trust IBCLCs.
IBCLCs Improve Breastfeeding Programs and Policies
The clinical practice experience and empirical knowledge of IBCLCs give insight into lactation program development. IBCLCs are instrumental in policy and program development discussions on any issues that affect breastfeeding mothers, families, and communities.