Can IBCLC Lactation Consultants do home visits during the COVID19 lockdown?
We are getting renewed interest and questions about whether Lactation Consultant (IBCLC) home visits are allowed during Covid 19 Lockdowns across the country. Unfortunately as your professional organization and not a regulatory body or college CLCA/ACCL remains unable to provide practice recommendations, or make a statement about whether our members may or may not provide in-home one-to-one lactation support.
We acknowledge that the recommendations given by governments of each municipality, province, territory and federal level may be different based on local case counts providing varied direction and guidelines according to current pandemic case criteria resulting in an inconsistent and confusing message regarding home visit safety.
Our members have been doing their best to keep the families they serve safe, by doing virtual sessions whenever possible, and encouraging office visits in established medical clinics, physician or nurse practitioner led offices and hospitals instead of home visits where possible. All of these measures have been put into place to continue to provide support while protecting clients and providers alike.
Since Lactation Consultants (IBCLC) are not yet Regulated Health Professionals in Canada (unless they hold another separate designation such as RN, MD etc.) they are not specifically covered in many of the government recommendation criteria for home visits. Lactation Consultants receive their credentials through the IBLCE (International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners) which has not released guidance on this topic for private practice IBCLCs, therefore CLCA cannot take a position on this topic as a professional association.