There are many things that happen that make me upset. You too? I know!
However, what really get my goat is when things are done, in what appears to be in an intentional way, to purposefully confused unsuspecting people (in my case parents) for their own profit and potentially to the unsuspecting person’s determent.
One example of this is human milk donation. Most people who donate their extra breastmilk want to do this for altruistic reasons. They are giving their extra breastmilk to a non-profit to help sick babies. But their are sites out there that look like non-profits that actually give their milk to for-profit companies. For instance, this site looks like they are non-profit (which they might be) but they actually are getting donated milk for a for-profit company.
Enough side tracking. One of the big things I am struggling with now is how to promote my 90 hour professional training. Teaching others has always been my passion. I love working one on one with mothers. I also love training others who are interested in knowing more about breastfeeding to help families. My course is designed to either enhance the lactation education of a nurse, doula, doctor, midwife or be a step on the pathway to becoming an IBCLC.
Most people who offer a week long course (mine is a two week comprehensive training) offer a “credential” of some sort at the end of the week. I feel it is ridiculous to think after one week or even two weeks, that you are qualified to go out and offer more than basic, and I mean basic, breastfeeding help. Where else in the health care profession can you become qualified to be a health care worker?
OK, so I don’t want to offer a “credential” but people keep calling me and asking if I do offer one and when I say I don’t they go elsewhere because others teach these week long courses do. This is hurting my business and people are not getting the quality training that they could be. And all these extra “credentials” are causing a lot of parent confusion.
For instance, to become a “CLE“, Certified Lactation Educator, you need a 20 hour course, attend a few breastfeeding meetings, and some other things. You get a credential for this?
There are others that are clearly just providing more education and are a pathway to becoming an IBCLC but they still provide letters after their course is completed.
Here is the one that really gets me. A “CLC“. Gosh that sounds confusingly similar to an “IBCLC”. A colleague wrote a post today that basically said if she felt the this training organization was trying to fill a hole for lactation support that would be ok, instead she are just trying to make money by causing parent confusion.
Here is one of their claims: “The Certified Lactation Counselor (CLC) certification program for Healthy Children Project is the premier National Certification for the United States.” What? I thought it was the IBCLC? To learn more about breastfeeding support people and the types and differences go here.
But let’s quickly look at some differences:
CLC- 45 hour training with test at end.
IBCLC- 8 college level course in the sciences, 6 continuing education courses, 300-1000 clinical hours working with mothers and babies, 90 hours of lactation education, and taking an official four hour exam.
Gosh, that doesn’t sound like the same amount of training and experience.
In the end, I didn’t want to add a credential to my course. But in order to compete in this business this is what you have to do. So I now offer a certificate of completion, the CCLS, Clinical and Communication Lactation Specialist. I do worry about offering this because the parent confusion is real.
If you are paying for lactation help, who do you want? Someone who took a week long course? Or someone who has been studying lactation and working with mothers and babies for years? Help others understand the difference.