Hello, and welcome to the Department of State Health Services class:
Evidence-Based Lactation Management: how to find, evaluate, and apply evidence
to improve outcomes for breastfeeding mothers and babies
The goal of this workshop is to help you understand and use the scientific literature to
promote and support breastfeeding. This workshop is intended to enhance your ability to
practice evidence based lactation management. Specific skills that should be improved
include your ability to
Find the research you need on the internet
Read and better understand research papers
Evaluate study methods and understand study statistics
Understand the value of diagnostic tests
Describe strengths and limitations of published research and diagnostic tests to
clients, students, and colleagues
Identify levels of evidence for specific breastfeeding recommendations and for
policy development
You won’t be an expert, but you should feel a bit more confident in your ability to use the
evidence in your work.
Breastfeeding research will be used as examples to explain the concepts presented in the
workshop. Breastfeeding topic areas will include use of pacifiers, evaluation of latch,
efficacy of donor milk, the impact of breastfeeding on otitis media, obesity, and other
diseases, the impact of epidurals on breastfeeding success, and several other topics.
In preparation for this workshop, we ask that you do the following things before you
1) Read the article “How to read a paper: getting your bearings” by Trish
Greenhalgh. This article will introduce you to key concepts that will be discussed
in the workshop.
2) Read through the list of statistical terms just to become somewhat familiar with
these words before the workshop begins. They will all be explained again, but
reading them ahead of time will help.
3) If you have an article that you would like to discuss, bring a few copies of it with
you to the workshop and we will help you evaluate it.
4) Pick a breastfeeding topic that you would like to research. You should be able to
leave the workshop with a bibliography of studies on this topic and a critique of
key studies in your list. If you pick a topic that will help you support a change in
breastfeeding policy at your institution, you should also be able to rank the level
of evidence for your proposed change in policy.