picture from milkinmamas.org
OK Momma's here's the scoop. When I decided to donate milk I did two things. First I asked my good friend google about it. It is a great resource and usually leads me to good information. The other thing I did was call the NICU at a local hospital. I talked to the lactation specialist and she gave me the phone number for the milk bank that supplies their precious little ones with donor milk.
There are several different labs across the country you can donate to. The Mother's Milk Bank is in Colorado. They are the ones that supply the local hospital here (at least IMC) I contacted them. They take milk that has been frozen for less than 5 months and they retire their donors when mommy's baby turns one. I wanted to donate to them because they help my local community. To get more information on them and what their guidelines to donate are go to http://www.rockymountainhospitalforchildren.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=68&Itemid=114
I also had a lot of milk stored (triple bagged at the bottom of my deep freezer, which is ideal) from before the 5 month mark. When I had my last baby I would pump and freeze my extra milk just in case my milk supply did not last so my baby would have a reserve. He is approaching the one year mark and will not need all this stored milk. With the first labs cut off date I did not want to just through this milk out so I found Milkin Mama's. They are located in California. They take milk up to a year old and will continue to take milk as long as you are nursing your own child. Their web address is http://milkinmamas.org/
Both labs have very similar guidelines; they both require doctor certification of your health & the baby you are nursing. They both have health forms to fill out & blood draws to be done. At first this seemed like a lot but it really only took a few minutes of my time and a trip to the lab for a blood draw. Milkin Mamas will actually send a phlebotomist to your house. They send you a cooler to ship the milk in and you overnight it to their lab frozen. I really like that they are thorough with their donor screening. If I had a sick baby who needed milk I would want to know that all precautions possible were taken to insure the safety of the milk they would receive.
The milk given to both of these labs goes to preemies & sick babies. As I googled I learned that there are also other uses for mommy milk. They are finding that liver transplant patients recover & heal better when given breast milk. I didn't look to far into it because I wanted my milk to go to the precious little babies who are in the greatest need. There are also websites where you can donate to individuals in need. You can look into it. I felt these were the best choices for me. Now is also a great time to donate because the labs are experiencing a shortage in part because of the flu season and the added strain of H1N1. Hope this helps...
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
Posted by Jodi at 4:48 PM