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Become a Lactation Consultant


​If you are interested in becoming a Lactation Consultant there is a process to be followed which incorporates both clinical experience and breastfeeding knowledge.

There are a variety of pathways possible and many, but not all, applicants are already health professionals. Visit for more information.

About the examination process



The International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners (IBLCE) sets and administers the competency exam by which IBCLCs are certified. The exam assesses knowledge and skills in the following areas, as they relate to the practice of a lactation consultant:


Become a Lactation Consultant




  • Physiology and endocrinology

  • Nutrition and biochemistry

  • Maternal and infant immunology and infectious disease

  • Maternal and infant pathology

  • Maternal and infant pharmacology and toxicology




  • Sociology and anthropology

  • Growth parameters and developmental milestones

  • Interpretation of research

  • Ethics and legal issues

  • Breastfeeding equipment and technology

  • Public health and advocacy


The exam covers the whole breastfeeding episode from the breast changes at puberty right through to the weaning process which may be 2 years and beyond. NZLCA educational opportunities will extend your breastfeeding knowledge and assist you to prepare for the exam.


The International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners (IBLCE) is an international organisation. Vicki Patterson is the IBLCE Coordinator for New Zealand and the local representative (see contact details at bottom of page).

IBCLC Requirements


Certification is for 5 years, and recertification is required. After 5 years IBCLCs may re-certify by continuing education, but must re-certify by exam after 10 years.


Check to see what seminars / conferences are coming up, and how many Continuing Education Recertification points (CERPs) are available for attending. CERPs can be obtained by presenting at conferences and attending and presenting case studies to other lactation consultant  local groups. On line breastfeeding modules are also a way of increasing CERPs.


Contact information

Contact Information (New Zealand)

New Zealand Coordinator: Vicki Patterson




Regional Office (in Australia)


IBLCE office in Queensland 


Email: Kerrie –

Email: Karolyn – 



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