Health e-Learning TeamThese past few weeks have been wonderful.  All of the Health e-Learning team were either at the Phoenix ILCA conference or the Melbourne ABA conference this year and we were so pleased to have had the opportunity to meet so many of our students. 

Breastfeeding in the Real World: Meeting the Challenges – ILCA conference.
Liquid Gold – Australian Breastfeeding Association's golden jubilee national conference.

Thanks to all of you who came up to us to have a chat.  This year at ILCA we shared a booth with Step2 Education and GOLD Conference International.  At both the ILCA and ABA conferences we had the opportunity to thank many of our expert lecturers and asked others to share their knowledge with us online.  We are looking forward to making new lectures available to you in 2014 and 2015.

It was great to be able to have the opportunity to catch up with so many colleagues and friends.  We at Health e-Learning understand how important it is to cherish connections with family and friends and keep the village supported.

In this month’s newsletter we would like to share some of the highlights of both the ILCA and ABA conferences and encourage you to consider one day attending an international conference, not only for the opportunity to hear and meet excellent speakers from around the world but to also network with others in the world-wide lactation community.

ILCA opened their conference with the parade of international flags followed by an excellent plenary presentation by Dr. Jane Heinig entitled, Reinterpreting Baby Behavior for the Lactating Mother.  This presentation was definitely thought provoking about infant and maternal communication.   Some of the other plenary presentations included Dr. Helen Ball talking about SIDS, Breastfeeding and Bed Sharing, Dr. Alison Stuebe addressed Obesity, Maternal Metabolic Disease, and Early Weaning and Dr Miriam Labbok’s closing presentation was on Constraints and Realities in Breastfeeding Protection, Promotion and Support.  We were also very pleased to hear David Clark from UNICEF speak on The Global Strategy on Infant and Young Child Feeding.

There were very interesting workshops and concurrent sessions  on Tongue-tie Assessment, Advanced Clinical Skills, Baby-friendly Hospital Initiative in the USA, Racial/Ethnic Disparities, Clinical Photography and Lactation Support for the Next Generation,  just to name a few. We had the privilege of attending the Lactation Summit which was a ground breaking event for the future of IBCLCs around the world.

Health e-Learning’s own Odile Lapointe presented at the summit a Quebec perspective of a French-speaking population in a mainly English-speaking North America.  She addressed the geographical and language issues for Quebec  Francophones.  You can read more about the Lactation Summit in the most recent issue of the Clinical Lactation journal  Thank you Cathy Carothers for an excellent article.

The Liquid Gold ABA 50th Anniversary Conference was also a wonderful celebration.  The Health e-Learning team felt privileged to be part of the festivities and presentations from the pre-conference workshops to the final closing ceremony.  We heard breastfeeding stories, we laughed and at times cried as those personal and professional stories were shared.  The concurrent sessions were pertinent, practical and educational. The session about working with large breasted women where we brain stormed and shared ideas that many of us have tried to help these mums was particularly good. The sessions on counselling and communication for Lactation Consultants also generated a lot of discussion and sharing of information.

This conference provided presentations useful for all involved in helping breastfeeding mothers. The plenaries were excellent with such privileged speakers as Prof. James McKenna presenting on Mother-infant Co-sleeping with Breastfeeding as Adaptation not Pathology and Emeritus Prof Peter Hartmann presenting on Experience-based versus Evidence-based Care for Breastfeeding Mothers. All of us attending were extremely impressed with Liz Crowe’s presentations.  She addressed the difficult topics of Understanding Everyday Loss and Grief and Self-nurturing for Women in the Age of “Busyness”, and through it all she had us hysterically laughing and sometimes in tears.  She is a powerful speaker with a powerful message to share. 

We hope you learn and enjoy.