Lactation Workforce Training

Tennessee remains under-resourced in the need for lactation professionals. These professionals provide a critical support for moms and babies during their initial and ongoing journey through breastfeeding.

On June 1, 2023, TennCare began reimbursing outpatient lactation visits for their TennCare Medicaid and CoverKids members. In order to provide these services, additional lactation professionals need to be trained and join the in-network benefits, as described below.

*When supervised and billed by a registered, in-network provider listed below, International Board-Certified Lactation Consultants (IBCLCs) with no additional medical licensure, Certified Lactation Specialists (CLSs), Certified Breastfeeding Specialists (CBSs), Certified Lactation Counselors (CLCs), and Certified Lactation Educators (CLEs) may provide lactation support to individuals with TennCare.

Supervising Providers include:

  • Physicians (MDs/DOs)
  • Physician Assistants (PAs)
  • Nurse Practitioners (NPs)
  • Certified Nurse Midwives (CNMs)
  • International Board-Certified Lactation Consultants (IBCLCs) with healthcare licensure

If you are an IBCLC, CLC, or CLE that is employed by an in-network, contracted provider, you must bill under the supervising provider. To contract and credential with a TennCare MCO as an independent provider, IBCLCs must carry liability as an individual or through their practice group. They must also have one of the following licenses/credentials:

•Dentist •Dietitian •Midwife •Nurse/RN •Occupational Therapist •Pharmacist •Physical Therapist or Physiotherapist •Physician or Medical Doctor •Speech Pathologist or Therapist

NLCA White Paper Impact of the International Board Certified Lactation Consultant Improving maternal/infant health outcomes: Promoting equity in access to clinical lactation care

Webinar Series

September 14 Webinar: Increasing Outpatient Breastfeeding Support and Services in TN: Consultants, Counselors, Educators, and Peer Supporters

October 12:   Strategies to Reduce Breast Cancer Risk

November 9, 2023:    Mental Health

Future webinars:

December 14, 2023:  When to Consult, Counsel & Refer Registration

January 11, 2024:       Social Media

February 8, 2024:       Disparities in Lactation Across TN

March 14, 2024:          BF during a Disaster

April 11, 2024:             Private Practice in Lactation & Billing

May 9, 2024:                The Lactation Worker

June 13, 2024: Back to Work

Lactation Training Opportunities

TIPQC will be taking scholarship applications for individuals wanting to pursue training as a:

  1. International Board Certified Lactation Consultants (IBCLC) Application Required by December 1, 2023 + $25 fee if accepted
  2. Certified Breastfeeding Specialist (CBS) Application Required by December 15, 2023 + $25 fee if accepted
  3. Hospital Workforce Education (Assuring Breastfeeding Success) through Lactation Education Resources Application Required by December 15, 2023, no fee
  4. Interdisciplinary Breastfeeding Education 3-hour free online course

TIPQC Annual Meeting Opportunity

Join TIPQC for a engaging meeting, and a half day breakout session on breastfeeding and lactation in Tennessee.

March (24) 25-26, 2024 in Franklin, TN

Registration information forthcoming.

TIPQC Taskforce

Brenda Barker, MEd, MBA, TIPQC Executive Director

Ginger Carney, MPH, RDN, LDN, IBCLC, RLC, FILCA, FAND, Director, Clinical Nutrition and Lactation Services, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital

Gloria Dudney, RN, IBCLC, RLC, Director of Lactation Services, ETSU Health, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology

Briana J. Jegier, PhD, Program Chair & Associate Professor, Health Administration and Public Health, Baptist Health Sciences University

Tiana Pyles MHA, CLC, *BSTARS*, Tennessee Breastfeeding Coalition, Shelby County Breastfeeding Coalition, United States Breastfeeding Committee, Chair 

Karen Schetzina, MD, MPH, FAAP, Professor, ETSU, TIPQC Infant Medical Director

Pat Steimer RN, IBCLC, President Executive Board | Mothers’ Milk Bank of Tennessee

Genae Strong, PhD, APRN, CNM, RNC-OB, IBCLC, RLC, CNE 
Methodist Health Care Llewellyn Legacy Professor, Professor, Loewenberg College of Nursing, Director of PhD Program

Sharon Wadley, RN, TIPQC Data Manager

Many thanks for the hours of investment in this project and improving the lactation services in our state.

This training is in thanks to a grant from AmeriGroup and United HealthCare.