University of Western Australia: Breastfeeding short courses aim to help mums and babies

The University of Western Australia is introducing two new online short courses in Lactology incorporating the latest in breastfeeding research, with the ultimate aim of improving the feeding experience for mums and their babies.

The UWA Schools of Allied Health, Molecular Sciences and Biomedical Sciences have developed the new micro-credentials, ‘Breastfeeding, a foundation for human health’, which will begin in February.

Senior Research Fellow with the Pharmacy Discipline of UWA’s School of Allied Health Dr Melinda Boss will lead the short professional courses which are designed to suit anyone with an interest in how breastfeeding works.

“This could include anyone working with breastfeeding mothers and infants such as lactation consultants, doctors, nurses, midwives, child health nurses, speech pathologists, pharmacists and dietitians, as well as anyone interested in a career in lactation research or in developing lactation education,” she said.

Dr Boss leads the LactaResearch Group at UWA and developed a world-first online lactation care support system called LactaMap to support GPs help patients who have problems breastfeeding.

She said UWA research had revolutionised understanding of the function of the lactating breast.

“However, statistics show that lactation is failing to function normally most of the time. It’s widely quoted that it takes 17 years for just 14 per cent of original research to reach the point of being incorporated into patient care,” she said.

“Our new Lactology micro-credentials fast-track these latest discoveries which we hope will help strengthen current available care and improve breastfeeding outcomes for families.”

Each Lactology micro-credential is 100 per cent online and consists of pre-recorded lectures, online discussion, live questions and answer sessions, reading and assessments. Start dates are 7 February 2022 for micro-credential 1 and March 28 for micro-credential 2.

“Each can be completed as a one-off or they can be stacked together, and graduates receive an academic transcript acknowledging completion, offering a potential pathway for health professionals to specialise in the field of lactology,” Dr Boss said.

Comments are closed.