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Using a Cool Head When You’re on the Hot Seat: Ethical and Legal Topics That Make Us Sweat, and How to Avoid Getting Burned

by Liz Brooks, JD, IBCLC, FILCA
  • Duration: 60 Mins
  • Credits: 1 CERP, 1 E-CERP, 0.1 Midwifery CEU
  • Handout: Yes

We all understand, generally, that lactation support providers – from licensed primary healthcare providers (HCP) to volunteer peer counselors – owe a “duty of care” to the parents they work with, defined by laws and ethics codes. But many are concerned that they do not know what is really expected of them, in the moment of clinical care, when decisions about how to do things “the right way” must be made. This session will cover the basic of ethics and legal duty as a lactation support provider. Examples from the International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC) literature will be used. A few topics that are the most common "hot spots" for practitioners (the ones that make us sweat) will be explored with a few slides, and a lot of free-flow Q&A with session attendees, as we ponder realistic tactics to protect ourselves as practitioners with cool heads and clinical excellence.

Learning Objectives:

Objective 1: Define the difference between an ethics obligation, and a legal obligation, in clinical practice

Objective 2: Explain how gifts and samples from commercial entities, to health care providers, can change professional clinical behavior

Objective 3: Describe why de-identification of a patient/client, before discussing their case with colleagues, does not meet ethical standards for privacy and confidentiality.

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