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Health Care Careers | Lactation Consultant

Lactation Consultant

What Does a Professional in this Career Do?

Works with new mothers to teach them how to feed their babies and manage breastfeeding issues. Provides clinical help and emotional support for breast-feeding mothers. Advises mothers on feeding schedules; helps with babies that have slow weight gain.

Job Outlook

There were 83 Lactation Consultant job postings in North Carolina in the past year and 1466 in the United States.

In combination with other careers in the Health Educator / Coach industry, which includes the Lactation Consultant career, the following graph shows the number of people employed for each year since 2004:

Salary

Many new Lactation Consultant jobs have salaries estimated to be in the following ranges, based on the requirements and responsibilities listed in job postings from the past year.

National

The average estimated salary in the United States for this career, based on job postings in the past year, is $67,959.

State

The average estimated salary in North Carolina for this career, based on job postings in the past year, is $66,671.

Percentiles represent the percentage that is lower than the value. For example, 25% of estimated salaries for Lactation Consultant postings in the United States in the past year were lower than $60,627.

Education and Experience

Posted Lactation Consultant jobs typically require the following level of education. The numbers below are based on job postings in the United States from the past year. Not all job postings list education requirements.

Education LevelPercentage
Associate's Degree22%
Bachelor's Degree71%
Master's Degree7%
Doctoral Degree0%
Other0%

Posted Lactation Consultant jobs typically require the following number of years of experience. The numbers below are based on job postings in the United States from the past year. Not all job postings list experience requirements.

Years of ExperiencePercentage
0 to 2 years64%
3 to 5 years35%
6 to 8 years0%
9+ years1%

Skills

Below are listings of the most common general and specialized skills Lactation Consultant positions expect applicants to have as well as the most common skills that distinguish individuals from their peers. The percentage of job postings that specifically mention each skill is also listed.

Baseline Skills

A skill that is required across a broad range of occupations, including this one.

  • Communication Skills (27%)
  • Planning (24%)
  • Teamwork / Collaboration (24%)
  • Research (21%)
  • Computer Literacy (13%)

Defining Skills

A core skill for this occupation, it occurs frequently in job postings.

  • Patient Care (38%)
  • Teaching (29%)
  • Treatment Planning (22%)
  • Life Support (21%)
  • Patient/Family Education and Instruction (16%)

Necessary Skills

A skill that is requested frequently in this occupation but isn’t specific to it.

  • Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) (12%)
  • Clinical Experience (12%)
  • Pediatrics (9%)
  • Quality Assurance and Control (8%)
  • Care Planning (7%)

Distinguishing Skills

A skill that may distinguish a subset of the occupation.

  • Discharge Planning (6%)
  • Childbirth (6%)
  • Maternal Child Health (6%)
  • Obstetrics (5%)
  • Infant Feeding (4%)

Salary Boosting Skills

A professional who wishes to excel in this career path may consider developing the following highly valued skills. The percentage of job postings that specifically mention each skill is listed along with the marginal value: the average salary difference between postings that request that skill and those that do not.

  • Patient Care Coordination (2%) – marginal value $6,495
  • Primary Care Provider (1%) – marginal value $3,360
  • Patient Care (38%) – marginal value $2,187
  • Emotional Support (2%) – marginal value $1,877

Alternative Job Titles

Sometimes employers post jobs with Lactation Consultant skills but a different job title. Some common alternative job titles include:

  • Lactation Consultant Registered Nurse
  • Registered Nurse Lactation Consultant
  • Lactation Specialist
  • Lactation Consultant Prn

Similar Occupations

If you are interested in exploring occupations with similar skills, you may want to research the following job titles. Note that we only list occupations that have at least one corresponding NC State Online and Distance Education program.

Common Employers

Here are the employers that have posted the most Lactation Consultant jobs in the past year along with how many they have posted.

United States

  • Hospital Corporation of America (82)
  • Kaiser Permanente (36)
  • Wakemed (26)
  • Beaumont Health System (21)
  • Adventhealth (21)

North Carolina

  • Wakemed (25)
  • UNC Health Care System (14)
  • Atrium Health (12)
  • Duke University (7)
  • Cone Health (5)

NC State Programs Relevant to this Career

If you are interested in preparing for a career in this field, the following NC State Online and Distance Education programs offer a great place to start!

Not sure where to start?

Get personalized program recommendations with Career Insight.

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