Catch Up With #ILCA16

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Thanks to our amazing on-site and live streaming community at #ILCA16, we have shared information around the globe about clinical skills, cutting-edge research, advocacy, and the global breastfeeding agenda.

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More than 200 of you shared more than 3,000 posts on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest, reaching more than 300,000 members of the lactation community with more than 6 million “impressions” (views of content). We couldn’t be more grateful for the ways that our community is amplifying the ways that world health is being transformed through breastfeeding and skilled lactation care.

In case you missed it, here’s a round up of some of the social media shared during the conference.

President’s Address: Michele Griswold

Plenary: Growth Charts: Use and Misuse – Carlos Gonzalez, MD

Plenary: Organizational Effect of Mother’s Milk on Infant Outcomes: Katie Hinde, PhD

Plenary: Beyond BFHI: The Expansion of the Baby-friendly Hospital Initiative to Neonatal Care

Plenary: My Brain is Doing What? Bias, Ethics, & the Lactation Specialist: Cynthia Good Mojab, MS, LMHCA, IBCLC, RLC

Plenary: WHO and the Baby Friendly Initiative: Laurence Grummer-Strawn, MPA, MA, PhD

Please come check out our Storify site here for more roundups as they are added, as well as roundups from previous ILCA conferences.

Huge thanks to ILCA Equity Committee Member and Secretary Tori Sproat for compiling these Storify summaries of the Twitter stream and to all of the conference participants who shared on the #ILCA16 hashtag. A special thanks to the following Tweeps for their contributions to our social media outreach:         @CoachLindaSmith

Also, a special thank you to Jodine Chase for her role moderating the live streaming on Saturday.

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Honoring a Lifetime of Global Advocacy: Margot Mann

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At #ILCA16 today, Margot Mann, IBCLC, RLC, BA, was honored for her lifetime of advocacy work on behalf of breastfeeding families and the IBCLC. From her role as ILCA’s Vice President for External Affairs, to her groundbreaking work elevating lactation in the global arena, Mann’s policy work has no doubt preserved, promoted, and protected breastfeeding.

We asked Margot to tell us about herself and her more than thirty years of work in the lactation field. Please join us in honoring Mann’s ILCA Lifetime Achievement Award while learning about this important history for the profession.

 

Tell us about where you live.

I live in Riverdale in the Bronx, New York City. I was born in Leeton, a little country town in Australia. I grew up in Melbourne and moved to the US when my first two children were very young.

 

What is your role in lactation?

I have multiple roles: clinician, educator, policy maker and advocate for breastfeeding, mothers, babies, families and the IBCLC profession.

 

Please tell us about the many “firsts” you have had as a groundbreaking leader in lactation.

In 1991, I set up the lactation program at Magee Women’s Hospital in Pittsburgh. At that time, it was the country’s largest private women’s hospital, delivering 10,000 babies per year with low breastfeeding rates. I wrote breastfeeding policies, gave in-services to the nursing staff, helped nursing mothers in need, and provided Grand Rounds to physicians. The program continues and breastfeeding rates have risen.

In 1986 I set up the first lactation consultant private practice in Queens, New York.

 

What calls you to lactation work?

Before my children were born, I was a high school teacher. Being a full-time mother, carrying, birthing, nursing and raising my children to be happy, healthy, contributing members of society is the thing that I am most proud of. Breastfeeding was easy for me. My babies taught me how to do it and I had wonderful support from my family. I was sorry to see how many other mothers were frustrated and had difficulty breastfeeding. I felt they and their babies were cheated of the support they needed. I repeatedly saw evidence of the impact of flawed advice they received from healthcare providers and others. I wanted to help mothers have the pleasures of nursing that I had experienced.

So, I became a La Leche League leader. Then, the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners (IBLCE) was formed and in 1986, I became International Board Certified Lactation Consultant. It is a privilege and great pleasure to help mothers in the process of matrescence to achieve their nursing goals. I feel very lucky to be doing this work.

 

What is your proudest accomplishment as a policy advocate?

My personal role was minor, but it is gratifying to see the growing respect given to lactation consultants and the specialized help we offer to nursing dyads. My role in policy work has spanned over 30 years, from representing La Leche League International at the UN to presenting ILCA’s credentials to the UN Economic and Social Council in 1995, and onward until this year.

In the 1980’s, WHO and UNICEF’s child mortality prevention strategy was “GOBI” – Growth monitoring, Oral rehydration, Breastfeeding and Immunization. The need for support for the “B” was rarely recognized. At NGO Committee on UNICEF (NGOCU) meetings, I repeatedly reminded participants, “But but but, don’t forget the B of breastfeeding. It needs protection, promotion and support.”

To build support for the “B”, I created a very well attended day-long seminar at the UN, “Breastfeeding: The Passport for Life,” along with Beth Styer. The goal was to educate and sensitize all mother and child advocates to the importance of breastfeeding in child mortality and morbidity reduction. We were VERY surprised by the attendance and excitement this seminar generated. It seemed to make our voice at the NGOCU meetings more valued. The issues of breastfeeding simply had not been considered by NGOCU participants as anything that needed to be considered. Breastfeeding was seen as a good idea, but didn’t every mother have breasts and the option to decide whether or not to use them to feed her baby? There was no understanding that this option could be undermined or needed support.

At the UN, I was one of many who contributed to the writing of the Convention on the Rights on the Child and the Global Strategy for Infant and Young Child Feeding, advocating for breastfeeding dyads. It was very exciting to see some of our language included in the final documents.

To create a stronger breastfeeding lobby, I created a UN Breastfeeding Advocacy Team (UNBAT) uniting NGOs who recognized the importance of breastfeeding. The UNBAT name added power and lent credibility to our efforts at the UN General Assembly Special Session. The UNBAT name made it possible for us to make a few “interventions” (i.e. speak from the floor of the UN General Assembly) to make our recommendation for policy changes directly to the delegates.

As ILCA’s Vice President for External Affairs (2000 – 2004) I reached out to international health professional organizations to encourage them to adopt the Global Strategy for Infant and Young Child Feeding. Some did, while others probably became aware of GSFIYCF for the first time.

I sought out talented IBCLCs and LLLLs to share in the work at the UN and helped them learn how to do this sensitive, diplomatic advocacy work. There is now a global Breastfeeding Advocacy Initiative led by UNICEF and WHO which builds on this early international work and holds great hope for greater protection, promotion, and support of breastfeeding. ILCA remains a part of this work.

 

Is there anyone you would like to thank?

Wasn’t I lucky to have been given such an opportunity to participate and influence global policy and promote the work of IBCLCs?

Above all, every mother I have been able to help with her maternal role of breastfeeding thrills me. I consider myself a lucky lady!

I thank my children for teaching me how to nurse and the need to respect each baby as an individual with unique needs. And I thank my husband and partner, John Mann, who was such an enormous support in my mothering and professional work, and my parents and family who were with me all the way. And I deeply appreciate the inspiration and wisdom from colleagues from whom I learned so much, especially people, like the late Chris Mulford who wrote the bulk of the UNBAT position papers we presented at the UN.

We are grateful to Margot for her incredible work to promote, protect, and support breastfeeding.

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With Deep Gratitude: Decalie Brown’s Presidential Farewell Interview

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Thank you Decalie Brown!

During Decalie Brown’s presidential tenure, ILCA has made major transitions that will guide its future: new core values of diversity, equity, and knowledge; a new vision and mission; and a strategic map.

With a new committee structure in place and growing Partner Initiative that now boasts 21 national-regional partners, ILCA is well positioned to transform world health through breastfeeding and skilled lactation care.

As her tenure as President draws to a close, we asked Decalie to share with us a bit about how she got involved, and the highlights – and challenges – of her time at the helm of the ILCA board.

 

How did you first get involved with ILCA in a volunteer capacity? What jobs have you held before becoming president?

After working as a registered nurse and midwife for most of my career, a significant back injury and a job opportunity drastically changed my direction towards community health nursing. This change of direction meant I was caring at the next level of nursing supporting mothers to achieve their breastfeeding goals in their own homes. It sounded like a dream job. After reading lactation and breastfeeding books, I was hooked! Mothers and babies achieving and fulfilling their breastfeeding goals was to be my life’s ambition.

I quickly discovered what an IBCLC was. I became a skilled lactation supporter in 2001. It was a proud moment and has continued to be so for me.

I presented a local parenting young group with a poster and volunteered for my first ILCA conference in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA in July 2006. It was one of the best received and well attended in ILCA’s history!

I had no idea of the requirements for a research poster and therefore had no expectation of what was in store. I was thrilled to have it on the wall and have the poster of an Australian young mother feeding her twins, who I had successfully supported to breast feed 18 months earlier. While there, I met two past ILCA Presidents judging my poster. There were mistakes galore including having it look 3D! I didn’t care. I felt so proud at that moment. The judges didn’t care. They were so encouraging, and I will never forget their kindness. Thank you Becky Mannel and Doraine Bailey.

I remember so well meeting so many of those ‘important people’ in the lactation world, sitting, talking and eating with them throughout the conference sessions, and of course, capturing that photo! I will forever treasure sitting on the bus beside my hero Ruth Lawrence to tour the Primary Health facility of CHOP. Meeting the then President Sue Cox, a fellow Australian, also my hero, was fantastic. I truly admired her courage to stand at the front and address all those conference delegates. That was a great start.

After being invited to attend as a special guest at the ILCA International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners® (IBLCE®) planning days in Las Vegas 2008, I had my first Board of Director experience on the Australian Lactation Consultant Board thanks to Gwen Moody’s gentle persuasions. I moved on to join ILCA in 2009.

Working for years in a partnership model with families enabled me to listen and empower others as a new board member. I enjoyed the excitement of the Marketing Director role, and we were lucky to have flexible volunteers on the committee. Most were young mothers themselves juggling work, family and volunteering for ILCA.

 

What has been your most fulfilling accomplishment as president? Your most challenging?

The birth of Lactation Matters was a major achievement. It was conceived of by Courtney Puge from SAGE Publications, wonderful ILCA volunteer Robin Kaplan, and myself. It was launched within three short weeks, in time for World Breastfeeding Week in 2011. A special thank you to Amber McCann, who was Lactation Matters next editor.

One of the greatest challenges at ILCA has also been one of our greatest successes. As I began my two years as the ILCA President, we – the ILCA BOD and ILCA staff – took a long hard look in the mirror, and we knew our structure and processes had to change.

Although the path was not yet obvious, we committed to making changes at ILCA. We knew that not every one of our plans would be popular. We also recognized that the change would not be small. Together, we undertook a complete renovation of ILCA.

We defined new core values for ILCA: Knowledge, Diversity and Equity. We made a new strategic plan and changes to be in line with our new vision: transforming world health through breastfeeding and skilled lactation care.

I would like to congratulate and thank the staff under Dick Padlo, Jessica Lytle and Marcy Cottle for their leadership, the inspirational marketing team, Amber McCann and Jeanette McCulloch, and the board of directors (BOD), who have been visionary and bold in their leadership. No stone has been left unturned.

This presidential term has been intense. We all have worked incredibly hard to embrace the changes and enhance opportunities for you, our members, and for the long term benefit for the lactation organisation.

We listened intensely and made much needed changes. At 31 years old, every aspect of ILCA is now strategically aligned with our strategic map. We can now say our home is newly renovated with the design and organisational framework we will need to reach our goals.

Our foundation is solid. We now can finalise the designs of our new structure that will enable us to work efficiently, to communicate effectively, and to be diverse and equitable while working to transform world health through breastfeeding and skilled lactation care. With five advisory committee structures almost complete and with a total of 21 new National-Regional partnerships, ILCA is in excellent shape. Watch for ILCA Connect, a new community that will help ILCA members communicate more effectively.

However, we need your help to continue the work we have started. We need you to volunteer for ILCA, and stand behind the organisation you know and trust. I encourage you to volunteer now to represent the next generations on the committees and leadership positions.

We are now strategically aligned. We are now organised. We are committed to transparency. The next phase of building will be under the leadership of the inspiring incoming President Michele Griswold and the ILCA BOD including new board member, Geraldine Cahill. The ILCA BOD and staff now representing and supporting you are a phenomenal team. Please get to know them!

 

What is your vision for the future of ILCA?

Over these past months I have reflected on my time on the ILCA board. The skills and lessons I have learned along the way are enormous. I am fortunate to have had the time of my life. However, I have also realised that becoming and being an IBCLC has been a privilege for me. I acknowledge the struggle others have go through to achieve this credential and the recognition of our profession. We must continue to work together to make changes so that becoming an IBCLC is possible for everyone.

Advocacy – both for ILCA and the IBCLC credential – will ensure that we can nurture all mothers, babies, and families across the globe. The next steps are, of course, evolving to meet the unique needs of communities around the world. After seeing briefly first-hand the refugees at the port in Athens, it is even more apparent that all mothers and babies need skilled lactation support. These are our future generations.

 

Is there anything you would like to add?

I want to extend a huge thank you to our members for sticking with us and entrusting us with the authority to govern your beloved professional organisation.

Personally, I consider myself privileged to have led this organisation after all the wonderful volunteers, board members and presidents who came before me. Becoming the ILCA President was never my intension when I started out in 2009. However, I took up the challenge. I am deeply honored and will be forever grateful to the ILCA membership, the BOD and staff for the amazing gift this opportunity it has given me.

THANK YOU to you, the amazing men and women who I have had the pleasure of meeting and working closely with over the years.

I ask you to keep all mothers and babies your priority.

I wish you all well, good health and happiness.

As I say farewell, it is not goodbye.

 

 

 

 

 

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Engage with #ILCA16 on Social Media

Engage #ILCA16 Soc Med

Be a part of the #ILCA16 online community!

Whether you are participating in #ILCA16 face-to-face or live streaming, social media can help you reach your goals without distracting from your conference experience.

Not able to attend this year? You will be missed, but you can still join the conversation!

At the Conference

Fire up your laptop or mobile device . . . we have WIFI! We are so happy to tell you that the main conference space will have WIFI for conference attendees.

ILCA Facebook fans:

Are you “going” on the event page? Be sure you have marked yourself as “going” on the ILCA Conference event page, which you can find here. The page is already active with people making plans for extracurricular events, sharing tips and conference-going strategies, and coordinating rides. During the event, you’ll get updates on last minute schedule changes, events, pictures to share, and more!

Help us find your posts: use the hashtag! Sharing pictures on your Facebook page of you with your favorite speaker? New insights? Favorite quotes? Be sure to mark your posts with the hashtag: #ILCA16

ILCA Tweeps:

Join the backchannel conversation! Share your insights—and hear what others are saying—on Twitter. We’ll all be tweeting the ILCA conference on the hashtag #ILCA16.

BONUS! Thursday—Saturday, we’ll pick a tweet of the day at random from the #ILCA16 stream. Each winner will be eligible for a FREE 1-CERP-eligible webinar from the ILCA Knowledge Center.

Tools we use:

TweetChat keeps you focused. This great tool isolates the tweets on the hashtag you choose, which can keep you from feeling distracted by other topics during a talk. Follow along at the conference in the #ILCA16 room here.

Hootsuite for following it all. Ready to multitask? Hootsuite allows you to follow multiple streams (like #ILCA16 and #LEAC16, the hashtag for the LEAC Global Forum).

Following from Afar

Every year, the ILCA community around the globe follows along and joins the conversation!

On Facebook: Find others’ posts about the conference. During the conference, enter #ILCA16 in the Facebook search bar. You’ll find all the conference-specific news!

On Twitter: We’ll be live tweeting the plenary talks! Follow along at #ILCA16.

On Pinterest: Check out our #ILCA16 conference board here, where we’ll share insights and pictures from the conference.

On Instagram: We’ll share conference image highlights at #ILCA16. Tag your images too!

Amber McCann, IBCLC and Jeanette McCulloch, IBCLC, are the #socmed junkies on the ILCA Marketing Team. You’ll find one of us at the roving #ILCA16 sign in the Chicago Ballroom (6-10), where the plenary sessions are held.

What are your favorite ways to participate in the conference using social media?

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Three Ways to be a Part of #ILCA16 Around the World

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At the International Lactation Consultant Association (ILCA) we are committed to ensuring the #ILCA16 Conference and Annual Meeting is accessible around the globe.

Here are three ways you can join us, no matter where you are around the world.

 

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FULL DAY LIVE STREAMING EVENT

What: Hear ALL the speakers on our Saturday agenda and get 6.5 CERPs, Contact Hours, and CMEs. Live streaming participants will receive EXCLUSIVE content and additional FREE credit for our Knowledge Center.

Who: Speakers include: Laura Haiek, MD, MSc; Michele Griswold, MPH, RN, IBCLC; Katie Hinde, PhD; Carlos González, MD; Ana Parrilla-Rodríguez, MD, MPH, FABM, IBCLC; Thomas Hale, RPh, PhD; and Panel Discussion with Maureen Dann, PPCNP-BC, IBCLC; Laura Haiek, MD, MSc; Elise Chapin, MEd, IBCLC; Trish MacEnroe, BS, CDN, CLC; Kathleen Marinelli, MD, IBCLC, FABM

When: live streaming option for Saturday, 23 July 2016. Online recording available for all paid participants.

How to participate: click here to register by Thursday, 21 July 2016, midnight, EDT USA

Learn more and register here!

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GLOBAL PARTNERS INITIATIVE WORKSHOP LIVE STREAMING

What: As someone who cares about national and global breastfeeding agendas, you are invited to an opportunity to hear from and be heard by those who share your challenges, hopes and aspirations. Join worldwide, national, and regional leaders in lactation as together we “bridge today’s vision with tomorrow’s reality” at the Second Annual Partner’s gathering, Influencing the Global Breastfeeding Agenda: A Workshop of the ILCA Global Partners Initiative.

Who: The free workshop will kickoff with an opportunity to learn about the agendas of leading worldwide organizations, including:

  • World Health Organization (WHO) technical officer Laurence Grummer-Strawn, MPA, MA, PhD
  • World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA) Co-Directors Amal Omer-Salim and Jay Sharma
  • Breastfeeding Promotion Network of India (BPNI) Central Coordinator Dr. Arun Gupta

Participants will then be invited to work in action-oriented groups alongside the ILCA national and regional partners.

When: 13:00-16:00 US Central Time, Wednesday, 20 July 2016 (Click HERE to see this time in your local time zone)

How to participate: Join this live event via FREE live streaming! Registration required.

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LEAC GLOBAL FORUM LIVE STREAMING

What: The LEAC Global Forum is a 90-minute, free session designed to help attendees learn how everyone can help increase access to the profession in their corner of the world. All are welcome. Topics include:

  • Exploring the barriers to entry to the profession
  • Learning about actions taken in the last two years by International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners® (IBLCE®), International Lactation Consultant Association® (ILCA®), and Lactation Education Accreditation and Approval Review Committee (LEAARC)
  • Reviewing successful models that can be replicated around the world
  • Identifying areas still needing improvement
  • Finding resources for learning more and ways to get involved

Who: Organized by the Lactation Equity Action Committee, an independent group addressing inequity in access to the International Board Certified Lactation Consultant® (IBCLC®) certification. Co-Chairs: Carole Dobrich, RN, IBCLC, ANLC, and Millie Goins, B.S., IBCLC. Location and live stream provided as an in-kind donation from ILCA, who is hosting the forum during their annual conference.

When: 21 July, 5:00 pm – 6:30 pm CDT (click here to see the event in your local time; during the #ILCA16 Annual Conference and Meeting – all are welcome)

How to participate: Join this live event FREE live streaming option. Recording will be available for those unable to attend live. Click here to learn more and register.

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Continuing Education Credit: ILCA is an approved provider of Continuing Education Recognition Points (CERPs) with the IBLCE. Our approval number is CLT-108-7. The Global Forum is approved for 1.5 CERPs. ILCA is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation. Our approval number is ILCA-P0286. Accepted for BRN credit by the Board of Registered Nursing. The Global Forum is approved for 1.5 Contact Hours. This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the Essential Areas and Policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) by Connecticut Children’s Medical Center. Connecticut Children’s Medical Center designates this educational activity for a maximum of 1.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits(s)™. Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. The Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) accepts hours without prior CDR approval and recognizes approval by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC). When recording hours on the CDR Activity Log, indicate the provider as “ILCA (ANCC).”

 

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NEW Staff Development eCourse “Managing Common Challenges” from ILCA and InJoy

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Once again, the International Lactation Consultant Association® (ILCA®) has co-produced, along with InJoy Birth and Parenting Education, a course to help health care professionals meet their lactation education needs. As a core value of ILCA, we believe knowledge guides our practice, strengthens our value, and supports our role in transforming global health.

This brand-new staff training breastfeeding eCourse, “Managing Common Challenges,” builds upon concepts taught in the “Core Concepts” eCourse and teaches more advanced skills for overcoming breastfeeding challenges before hospital discharge. These courses will help to standardize your staff’s messaging and the care that they provide around breastfeeding.

You can learn more about the “Managing Common Challenges” course by clicking HERE.

ILCA Conference Offer! Stop by the InJoy booth (#403) and receive a coupon for 10% off your first-year system license or single user version of either course.

We strongly encourage ILCA members to consider how this course could benefit their communities or their own professional growth.

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National—Regional Partner Update: Asociación Española de Consultoras Certificadas en Lactancia Materna (AECCLM)

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The ILCA Global Partners Initiative was designed to improve breastfeeding worldwide by creating linkages between organizations around the globe. The Partners Initiative gained even more momentum with the recent signing of the 19th National-Regional Partner, La Asociación Española de Consultoras Certificadas en Lactancia Materna (AECCLM), the new professional organization for IBCLCs in Spain.

We asked Carmela Baeza, MD, IBCLC, the president of AECCLM, to share with us more about the status of breastfeeding support in Spain and why this new agreement is so meaningful.

 

Lactation Matters: Tell us about why AECCLM is so important to human health in Spain.

Dr. Carmela Baeza: Breastfeeding rates in Spain are not very impressive. We have an 85-90% initiation rate, 70% at 6 weeks, 50% at 3 months and around 25% at 6 months.

In the last ten years, the importance of breastfeeding support has been recognized by the Spanish national government. Support has been forthcoming in the form of some campaigns and the allocation of funds for the training of healthcare providers (HCP) by our national health service.

So we can say that we are on the first steps of change. In this landscape, the birth of our organization is important. We´d like to be a referent, a keystone to help breastfeeding promotion and support be evidence-based and up-to-date, and to be a voice for those mothers, babies and families who want to benefit from breastfeeding, but frequently cannot do so for a lack of support (both social and healthcare-wise).

LM: What challenges do you face in your work?

CB: We face multiple challenges. For years, there has been a great lack of breastfeeding knowledge and loss of our breastfeeding culture. On the one hand, HCPs have not been trained in breastfeeding so mothers get contradictory and often downright wrong advice about breastfeeding management. And second, to fill the void created by this lack of knowledge and support, many people have self-trained or acquired breastfeeding training of only a few hours, and have become breastfeeding counsellors with no official certification. While some of these people are excellent breastfeeding counsellors, many of them are not and often overstep boundaries, both putting mother-baby dyads in danger, and creating bad blood toward any breastfeeding professional.

So this is a critically important moment for our organization to stand up and shine. First, we are working to ensure that IBCLCs become accepted and valued as a necessary part of the healthcare team. Second, we want to offer parents the certainty that they are being helped by qualified, certified, and ethical breastfeeding professionals.

LM: What is your vision for breastfeeding support in Spain?

CB: Our vision for breastfeeding in Spain is for IBCLCs to be part of the national healthcare system, as well as in private practice for those families that prefer it. We dream of being present in all steps that mother, babies and their families take, to ensure the best start for all our children.

LM: Why did your organization decide to become an ILCA National-Regional Partner?

CB: AECCLM decided to become an ILCA partner believing there is strength in working together!! Many of the challenges we face are similar all around the globe; we believe that sharing experiences and ideas, as well as offering each other support and encouragement, are necessary in this battle for global health.
Baeza imageCarmela Baeza, MD, IBCLC is the president of AECCLM. She was born in Madrid, Spain and everyone calls her Kika. She is a medical doctor, specializing in family medicine and sexual therapy. In her role at a private Family Wellness Clinic, Raices, she heads the lactation program. She has been attending breastfeeding dyads since 2003, and became an IBCLC in 2005. She is also an ILCA member and an BFHI Evaluator.

The Raices lactation program includes two IBCLCs attending moms & babies at the clinic (Carmela and a co-worker) and an extensive offer of breastfeeding training for professionals, doulas and breastfeeding peer counsellors. Baeza has coordinated more than 50 breastfeeding courses, training over 3000 doctors, midwives and nurses from Public Hospitals in the Madrid area.

She is also the author of a parenting book, Amar con los Brazos Abiertos, and co-authored (with Dr. Concha de Alba, IBCLC, MD) the chapter on breastfeeding in the book Pediatría Extrahospitalaria. Fundamentos Clínicos para Atención Primaria (Outpatient Pediatrics. Clinical Foundations for Primary Care). She and her husband Carlos have four children.

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One Month Until World Breastfeeding Week 2016!

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In just one month, please join us in celebrating World Breastfeeding Week (WBW) 2016, 1-7 August 2016!

Breastfeeding: A Key to Sustainable Development is this year’s theme, developed by the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA).

At ILCA, we believe that world health can be transformed through breastfeeding and skilled lactation care. We also know the many impacts breastfeeding has on individuals, communities, and national health. As a part of our global advocacy strategy, we are working hard to ensure that breastfeeding is on the worldwide agenda.

In September 2015, world leaders committed to 17 goals aimed at ending poverty, protecting the planet, and ensuring prosperity. These goals are known as the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

One way to ensure the world’s leaders know what we know – the lifelong outcomes of breastfeeding for mothers and their children – is to show the connections between these outcomes and the 17 SDGs.

As one of WABA’s core partners, ILCA is committed to spreading the word. We need your help! Here’s how you can support breastfeeding in your community, your country, and the world:

  • Learn about the SDGs.
  • Educate others in your community and your country about how the SDGs relate to breastfeeding and Infant and Young Child Feeding (IYCF).
  • Engage and collaborate with others to promote, protect, and support breastfeeding.

How can you participate in World Breastfeeding Week this year?

Visit the WBW 2016 website for general information and downloadable promotional materials, including the WBW 2016 Action Folder. The action folder explains how breastfeeding is linked to each of the SDGs individually and along four thematic areas. It includes useful facts and figures, examples of actions for various levels of participation, and a section on ways of working to achieve the SDGs through sustainable partnerships and the rule of law.

Sign the WBW 2016 Event Pledge Form. By submitting a form, you or your organization pledge to celebrate WBW 2016 by hosting a WBW event. For every pledge that is received, the WBW 2016 logo will appear on a world map on their website, with celebrants names and the locations of events.

Share your commitment to breastfeeding advocacy and education as an imperative part of accomplishing the SDGs. The link between breastfeeding and each of the SDGs may be obvious to breastfeeding advocates, but there is still work to be done to make these connections clear to others working on SDGs. We know what needs to be done to support and enable mothers to breastfeed optimally, but we need to be more proactive and engage more people to make this a reality. Linking breastfeeding with the SDGs helps us to do this.

Look for information and action steps throughout the week at Lactation Matters, where you’ll find articles, images, action steps, and more to help with your successful WBW 2016 observance.

For the most up-to-date information about WBW 2016 and to download and purchase promotional materials, please visit the World Breastfeeding Week website by clicking here.

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Protections for Breastfeeding at the 69th World Health Assembly

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Substantial gains for the protection of breastfeeding and infant and young child health were made at the recent 69th World Health Assembly (WHA), held May 2016.

As described by the World Health Organization (WHO), the WHA is attended by delegates from WHO Member States (nations) and representatives from many agencies, organizations, foundations, and other groups that contribute to improving public health. Member States approve resolutions in committee before formally adopting them in the plenary session at the end of the Health Assembly.

The resolution on infant and young child nutrition included the important agenda item: Guidance on ending inappropriate promotions of foods for infants and young children. The resolution included key provisions for governments to regulate the marketing of commercial baby milks and baby food products, specifically tackling formulas for older babies and conflicts of interest.

Opposition to the proposed provisions came by way of countries with extensive manufacturing capacities, primarily the United States, New Zealand, and the European Union. And there is much at stake. The recent Lancet series on child survival (2016) painted a grim picture of at least 800,000 deaths of children under five linked to no or insufficient breastfeeding, even as obesity, cancer, diabetes, and cardiac disease rates soar. Those in the business of profiting from formula and baby food sales (currently hitting the US$45 billion mark, and likely to see a sales rise of 55% to US$70 billion by 2019) shamelessly maneuvered to sabotage efforts to put the brakes on formula promotions, to protect the billions to be made.

Despite attempts by the exporting countries to remove critical safeguards, such as deleting provisions that require regulation and appropriate sanctions and placing trade obligations before health protection, other countries opposed the amendments to weaken the Guidance. India led successful calls to ensure that trade priorities must not take precedence over public health and child rights. They also spoke in support of the idea that WHO Guidance and its norms must not only have ‘weight’ in trade terms but that Member States can take additional action to end inappropriate promotion. The final Resolution that was adopted, although compromised in certain sections, is now a strong tool that Member States can use with confidence to expand the scope of law.

The International Baby Food Action Network (IBFAN) opposed the U.S. efforts to use this issue to promote the status of Codex (the United Nations body for setting global food standards).¹ [The Codex Alimentarius or “Food Code” was established by the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) and the World Health Organization in 1963 to develop harmonized international food standards. The Codex standards, which protect consumer health and promote fair practices in food trade,  also serve in many cases as a basis for national legislation.] The U.S. efforts were a blatant attempt to downplay the role of WHO as the parent body of Codex and ensure Codex would not take the Guidance seriously. The poor conflict of interest rules allow a heavy presence and influence of the foods industries at Codex meetings. The weak rules also create many obstacles for WHO and health advocate efforts to ensure that baby food standards are in line with WHO policy and, in particular, the International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes and WHA Resolutions. IBFAN’s 20 years of participation in Codex standard setting has led the struggle for policy alignment.

As much as global policy recommendations to governments are compromised, the outcomes are critical tools for those of us working with mothers and children. The International Code and WHA resolutions are among the best tools we have for the protection of breastfeeding and infant and young child health.

The 69th WHA is another step forward. The Resolution now affirms that the guidance on ending inappropriate marketing is WHO policy, and that all products marketed for babies up to 36 months should be treated as “breastmilk substitutes” and fall under the marketing restrictions of the Code. These new “Milks,” cynically sharing branding with milks for newborns but marketed for older infants and young children, are invariably flavored and sweetened, presenting a high risk for child obesity and its long-term consequences. And, importantly, the Guidance moves beyond the WHA Resolution 49:15 with specific recommendations for addressing conflicts of interest.

¹ The U.S. tactic was to downplay the role of WHO and promote the status of the WHO/FAO Codex Alimentarius Commission, the global food standard setting body.
² Cynically, the products share the branding with formulas for newborns and are packaged to look just like them. This ‘brand stretching’ is a well-known tactic used by tobacco companies to get around legislation.

 

Elisabeth-Sterken-130x180Elisabeth Sterken, BSc, MSc, Dt. is a professional nutritionist specializing in infant and young child feeding. She has been actively working on the protection, promotion, and support of breastfeeding in her home country, Canada, and internationally for over 25 years. She is the current director of INFACT (Infant Feeding Action Coalition) Canada and IBFAN (International Baby Food Action Network) North America, as well as the co-chair of the IBFAN Global Council.

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LEAC Global Forum: Equitable Access to IBCLC Certification, Where Do We Go from Here?

LEAC Blog HeaderThe Lactation Equity Action Committee (LEAC) invites you to the LEAC Global Forum: Equitable Access to IBCLC Certification: Where Do We Go From Here?

Substantial roadblocks to attaining IBCLC certification exist worldwide, including challenges related to language, education, and systems of oppression. This forum will provide an overview of those barriers, the history of work conducted by individuals and organizations during the last two years, and resources and opportunities for finding solutions.

Who should attend: Everyone! The LEAC Global Forum is for those who are new to learning about barriers to the lactation profession as well as for those who are already hard at work doing their part to help make access to the lactation consultant profession more equitable. Participants will receive 1.5 continuing education units.

What: The LEAC Global Forum is a 90-minute, free session designed to help attendees learn how everyone can help increase access to the profession in their corner of the world. All are welcome. (Participants do not need to be registered at the ILCA Conference to attend. No registration is required for in-person participants. Free registration is required for live streaming participants). Topics include:

  • Exploring the barriers to entry to the profession
  • Learning about actions taken in the last two years by International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners® (IBLCE®), International Lactation Consultant Association® (ILCA®), and Lactation Education Accreditation and Approval Review Committee (LEAARC)
  • Reviewing successful models that can be replicated around the world
  • Identifying areas still needing improvement
  • Finding resources for learning more and ways to get involved

Speakers include:
Modia Batterjee, DHA
Alice Farrow
Cynthia Good Mojab, MS, LMHCA, IBCLC, RLC, CATSM
Sherry Payne, MSN, RN, CNE, IBCLC
Jennifer Welch, IBCLC-RLC

When: 21 July, 5:00 pm – 6:30 pm CDT (click here to see the event in your local time; during the #ILCA16 Annual Conference and Meeting – all are welcome) [EDITORS NOTE: please note the corrected time zone link revised 5 July]

Where: The Sheraton Grand Hotel (the site of the #ILCA16 Conference and Annual Meeting), 301 E. Water Street, Chicago, IL, USA, 60611

This event is free and no registration is required for in-person participants. FREE live streaming of the LEAC Global Forum is also available for those who cannot attend in person! Click here to register.

Who: Organized by the Lactation Equity Action Committee, an independent group addressing inequity in access to the International Board Certified Lactation Consultant® (IBCLC®) certification. Co-Chairs: Carole Dobrich, RN, IBCLC, ANLC, and Millie Goins, B.S., IBCLC. Location and live stream provided as an in-kind donation from ILCA, who is hosting the forum during their annual conference.

Continuing Education Credit: ILCA is an approved provider of Continuing Education Recognition Points (CERPs) with the IBLCE. Our approval number is CLT-108-7. The Global Forum is approved for 1.5 CERPs. ILCA is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation. Our approval number is ILCA-P0286. Accepted for BRN credit by the Board of Registered Nursing. The Global Forum is approved for 1.5 Contact Hours. This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the Essential Areas and Policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) by Connecticut Children’s Medical Center. Connecticut Children’s Medical Center designates this educational activity for a maximum of 1.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits(s)™. Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. The Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) accepts hours without prior CDR approval and recognizes approval by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC). When recording hours on the CDR Activity Log, indicate the provider as “ILCA (ANCC).”

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