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What Do the Changes Announced by USLCA Mean To US ILCA Members?

ILCALogo_full_text (2)The United States Lactation Consultant Association (USLCA) has announced its intent to change its relationship with the International Lactation Consultant Association® (ILCA®). USCLA will establish an operation fully independent of ILCA so that USLCA may focus on the unique challenges of the IBCLC® in the United States. Nonetheless, ILCA is committed to a continuing collaboration with USLCA to advocate for the IBCLC. As always, ILCA will support its members worldwide.

We are all international and part of a global community. Every region in the world  – including the United States – has particular needs, which are, by design, capably managed by the local and affiliate organizations. Those local efforts are supported and enhanced by the international advocacy provided by ILCA.

You may be asking what all of this means for US members. Currently, all US members hold a joint membership with USLCA and ILCA. The recent change will effectively “unbundle” membership. However, all of your member benefits through the end of the 2014 calendar year, both those that come from ILCA and USLCA, will remain unchanged. Starting next year, you are encouraged to maintain membership in both organizations.

We know that one of your first questions is likely about how the new memberships will be structured. Although ILCA only recently learned of these changes, we are already hard at work creating a plan. Over the next few weeks, we will be exploring a new membership package that continues to put the needs of our members at the forefront. As the premier global association advocating for the International Board Certified Lactation Consultant profession, ILCA is home to all IBCLCs worldwide, providing services unavailable elsewhere. If you have ideas, questions or comments, we’d love to hear from you. Please feel free to contact us at

5 Responses to What Do the Changes Announced by USLCA Mean To US ILCA Members?

  1. Debi Ferrarello 29 July 2014 at 20:29 #

    You may be wondering about the recent operational change made by USLCA. What is an operational change? Large organizations typically engage the services of a management company or hire their own staff to perform services that facilitate the day to day business duties or operation of the organization. Things like accounting, answering the phone and emails, correspondence, ordering materials and supplies, fulfilling member orders, etc are services that occur behind the scenes. These management services were provided to USLCA through an agreement with ILCA who contracted for them with a management company. Because of USLCA’s expansion in membership and services, we outgrew the capacity of ILCA’s management company and found the need to cancel the agreement with ILCA for management services and hire our own staff. This also necessitated a change in how membership dues would be collected. Each organization will collect its own dues with the goal being to increase membership and streamline the process. USLCA remains committed to ILCA and both organizations are working together to redefine our relationship. Please send questions for USLCA to

    Alisa Sanders, RN, IBCLC
    President, USLCA
    on behalf of the USLCA Board of Directors

  2. Anne Merewood, Editor in Chief, Journal of Human Lactation 1 August 2014 at 01:12 #

    I think it important to note, that JHL is a benefit for ILCA members, and it is supported by ILCA membership fees. ILCA members only receive JHL as a direct member benefit. If the USLCA move were to result in a lower number of ILCA members, JHL would lose its financial support. JHL is the top ranked breastfeeding journal. Its impact factor just rose this week to the highest level ever, and it represents a substantial evidence base for the lactation consulting profession.

  3. Susan 9 August 2014 at 07:05 #

    If the JHL was made available online rather than hard copy would it cost less to produce?

    • lactationmatters 20 August 2014 at 18:02 #


      The JHL is made available online and can be accessed for free by members of ILCA through the ILCA Website. As for making it available solely online, our members have expressed in the latest membership survey that they still prefer the printed copy. But either way, if we were to go down to solely online, we would lose much of our advertising revenue which is dependent on number of printed copies. Advertising dollars are critical to the success of the journal.

  4. ECBrooks 14 August 2014 at 10:05 #

    Susan, JHL is available online, already, of course, and ILCA members have access to both the online and print versions of every issue ever published. AND ILCA members can get free and easy mobile access through their phones (go to while on your device).

    At the annual general membership meeting held at the 2014 ILCA Conference, the budget report showed us that it costs half-again-as-much to publish JHL as the journal generates in revenue. ILCA and its members *want* highly-skilled academicians, peer reviewers, editors, publishers and statisticians putting together the Number 1 ranked breastfeeding journal in the world (with an impact factor of 1.977

    To make up the difference, ILCA needs a committed, and steadily increasing, member base. Conference fees and revenues pretty much take care of conference costs; not much (but some …) is left over to help offset JHL’s costs.

    Your ILCA membership goes in part to pay for JHL publication … but it doesn’t cover 100% of the cost of production. JHL revenues come from subscriptions (including institutional subscriptions, from libraries), and Code-compliant ads in the print version. On-line-only publication would eliminate ads as a source of revenue.

    In short: Going to online-only publication does not magically eliminate enough costs of production, and eliminates 100% of the ad-generated revenue.

    Steadily increasing ILCA membership is the best way to assure ILCA’s flagship publication continues production, continues to help ILCA meet its mission (“advance the IBCLC profession through … research”), and continues to give IBCLCs tools to put the evidence base into clinical practice.

    –Liz Brooks, JD, IBCLC, FILCA
    Past ILCA President

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