Understanding Lactation Consultants

What’s the difference between lactation consultants?

Besides the “gold standard” certification, International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC), there are other less formal certifications available. Certified Breastfeeding Counselor (CBC), Certified Lactation Counselor (CLC), and Certified Lactation Educator (CLE) are other options. Some of these certifications can be received after taking a one week course and passing a test administered at the end.

However, only IBCLCs are considered “registered lactation consultants,” since they are registered with the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners. Typically these other types of lactation consultants are supervised by a registered lactation consultant in case they encounter anything outside the normal course of breastfeeding.