Mother donates breast milk

Local Breast Milk Bank Growing To Keep Up With Demand

90.5 WESA – More mothers are turning to milk banks for pasteurized donor human breast milk to give to needy infants. The organizations collect, test and treat the milk that is later provided to babies who wouldn’t otherwise receive its benefits.

Here in the Pittsburgh region, the Mid-Atlantic Mothers Milk Bank is pushing state lawmakers to better regulate the industry.

More mothers are turning to milk banks for pasteurized donor human breast milk to give to needy infants. The organizations collect, test and treat the milk that is later provided to babies who wouldn’t otherwise receive its benefits.

Here in the Pittsburgh region, the Mid-Atlantic Mothers Milk Bank is pushing state lawmakers to better regulate the industry.

The Confluence’s Megan Harris is joined by a panel of experts, including:

  • Denise O’Connor, founder and executive director of the Mid-Atlantic Mother’s Milk Bank;
  • Debra L. Bogen, professor of pediatrics at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and milk bank volunteer medical director; and
  • Jennifer Kloesz, associate professor of pediatrics at Pitt, milk bank board member, neonatologist and the medical director in the NICU at Magee-Women’s Hospital.

A growing number of women are taking advantage of the resource and more pediatricians are prescribing breast milk to babies. The Mid-Atlantic Mother’s Milk Bank sends the product they provide through a rigourous process for donors, as well as a pasteurization process for the breast milk to ensure it’s safe for babies.

That process, according to O’Connor, is not guaranteed to women who seek out breast milk through informal online marketplaces – something she warns mothers against. A bill being considered in the state house would require Pennsylvania Department of Health to license donor milk banks in compliance with the bill’s regulations.

Go to the full article to hear the interview (starts at 22:18)