This highly specialised course will enable you to demonstrate to employers and potential employers your knowledge and skills relevant to working in lactation, breastfeeding support and frenulotomy services. It will provide the theoretical and evidence-based theory which underpins contemporary practice and helps you to develop advanced techniques in tongue-tie (ankyloglossia) management.
This one-year programme prepares you to practise safely and effectively as a tongue-tie practitioner and is suitable for professionals from settings including midwifery, health visiting, advanced neonatal nursing practice, dentistry and paediatrics.
The programme will enable you to deliver and lead evidence-based care for families and babies, working in partnership with multi-disciplinary teams. This includes optimising normal physiological processes, providing a first-line response to, and management of complications, as well as supporting women and their babies with infant feeding needs. The programme reflects a student-centred approach to education with emphasis on active learning, research-awareness, professional reflection and critical thinking in preparation for you to assume autonomous practice.
INTAKE: February 2022
Course subject to a minimum number of confirmed students.
Delivery dates and times are subject to confirmation and may change due to the availability of specialist practitioners.
2021/22 Prices for this new 20 credit module are currently being finalised.
What experience is required for me to gain a place on this course?
Applicants must have experience in, and knowledge of, lactation support and infant feeding. Having the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners (IBCLC) qualification is desirable, but not essential. Applicants must also be experienced and competent in supporting families with infant feeding. Having competency in the Newborn and Infant Physical Examination (NIPE) is also helpful but not essential. You must be registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council or General Medical Council and have a minimum of three years’ post-qualification clinical experience. The course is aimed at National Health Service (NHS) professionals, who are already working in an established NHS ankyloglossia/frenulotomy service or willing and able to establish one in the future. Please ensure your application indicates all of your relevant experience.
How long is the course?
The course takes approximately 12 months to complete on a part-time basis. It begins with one mandatory study day held online followed by completing the competencies in clinical practice associated with ankyloglossia management and frenulotomy. You must complete 20-25 full assessments of tongue-tie (including infant feeding) and frenulotomies in order to pass clinical practice. This usually takes attendance at 4-6 clinics, depending on how many babies are seen in a clinic and how many of them go on to require a frenulotomy following assessment. It will also be dependent on how confident your assessor feels you are at carrying out the assessments and procedures.
What do I have to do to achieve the full accreditation?
To gain full accreditation you must:
- complete the mandatory study day (all day, online via the University’s virtual learning environment, Canvas)
- submit a 1,500 word case study at Level 7 (Master’s level) achieving a pass grade of at least 50%. The case study will be based on a full assessment of ankyloglossia and subsequent frenulotomy performed in practice
- undertake a clinical practice placement in order to achieve the competences and undertake 20-25 assessments of ankyloglossia and frenulotomies
Where can I do my placement?
Placements are available at the Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust (Russells Hall Hospital in Dudley) but these are subject to availability and capacity is limited. Places at the Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust are offered in the order which applications are received, therefore if you feel you will need a placement at Dudley, it is suggested that you apply early. Your placement dates and times will be arranged with you following the mandatory study day. You are likely to need to attend a minimum of 4-6 clinics to achieve competency. You may alternatively wish to undertake a placement in your local area. If you are able to arrange this and organise appropriate supervision we will provide all necessary practice documentation.
What clinical competencies do I have to achieve?
You will be provided with a practice assessment document (PAD) and this will need to be completed by you and your supervisors. You must achieve competency in all areas and must be supervised carrying out a minimum of 20-25 full ankyloglossia assessments and frenulotomies.
How much academic work is involved?
Approximately one academic credit equates to 10 hours of study. This course is 20 credits, therefore, approximately 200 hours of study are required overall. This will include hours spent on the mandatory study day, clinical practice time and time spent writing your case study. The remainder of time should be spent reading around the topic to ensure you have a sound evidence base to underpin your practice. There is only one piece of academic work (the case study), which must be passed at a minimum of 50% at Level 7, and is submitted towards the end of the course.
Do I need to register with the CQC?
If you are planning to set up a private practice then you must register with the Care Quality Commission which will incur a cost.