Lactation Consultant Schools
What is a Lactation Consultant?
Lactation consultants work in a variety of environments where new and expecting mothers are in need of assistance. The primary job for lactation consultants is promoting breast feeding for new mothers, assisting in what is genery referred to as "the most unnatural, natural part of motherhood". Moreover, any time there are complications with newborns, including congenital defects such as a cleft lip or palate or health problems suffered by either the baby or the mother.
Hospital Lactation Consultants
A typical hospital lactation consultant works closely with new mothers in the labor and delivery unit to assist them with the beginnings of breast-feeding, just after the baby is born. Lactation consultants are required in any hospital setting where mothers are giving birth, to be on-hand for any questions or concerns that may arise during this critical time. Within this hospital setting, lactation consultants work closely with nurses, doctors and especiy nutritionists. The nutritionists and dietitians working with the new mothers must many times collaborate with lactation consultants to find a diet with the nutritional needs new mothers need to provide healthy breast milk for their new-born babies. Hospital lactation consultants can many times teach classes or lead instruction in a hospital setting for new and expecting mothers who are new to breastfeeding. Other areas of practice are in pediatricians or obstetrics/gynecology (OB/GYN) offices. Those who wish to work in a hospital environment often find the experience the most rewarding, as they are able to treat a wide variety of new mothers and new-born babies.
Private Practice Lactation Consultants
Private practice lactation consultants often work closely with other health care professionals including nutritionists, nurses and doctors of obstetrics/gynecology. A career in a private practice setting can be more flexible, as the position is not relied on in a 24/7 hospital environment. Many private practice lactation consultants are also specialized in additional areas of health care including nursing, nutrition or dietetics, prenatal psychology and more. Private practice lactation consultants are also available in many more settings than just offices or clinics, including even home visits, if necessary or desired by the client or patient.
WIC Program Lactation Consultants
Many state’s Health Departments have a Women, Infants and Children organization (WIC). These organizations work with private and public institutions to provide funding, education and care for low-income mothers or expecting mothers during pregnancy, breastfeeding, and throughout the growth of infants and sm children. Since nutritional care and education is the primary objectives of a WIC organization, lactation consultants work very closely with other related health care professionals including nutritionists and dietitians, nurses, doctors and many others.
Lactation Consultant Schools
The lactation consultant colleges, universities and certificate programs listed below offer the training available for those who wish to pursue a career as a lactation consultant. Request information from as many schools and programs as you would like. Compare programs and find the degree that matches your educational and career goals.