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UPMC Horizon Partners with the Mid-Atlantic Mothers’ Milk Bank

The Record-Argus (June 20, 2024) – In partnership with the Mid-Atlantic Mothers’ Milk Bank (MAMMB), UPMC Horizon recently began purchasing breast milk for patients. UPMC Horizon joins UPMC Magee-Womens, UPMC Hamot and UPMC Altoona in adopting this initiative, either in their neonatal intensive care unit (ICU) or in their birthing units.

“Recognizing the importance of human milk for newborns, UPMC has been a big supporter of the milk bank since day one,” Denise O’Connor, I.B.C.L.C., executive director of the Mid-Atlantic Mothers’ Milk Bank and co-director, Human Milk Science Institute and Biobank, said. “We are thrilled and grateful for this partnership which will be such a wonderful convenience for the community along with raising awareness about donor milk.”

“It brings me immense joy to bring this program home to our community, providing our patients a safe, convenient way to feed their babies when they need breast milk,” Rosalie Wagner, M.D., neonatology at UPMC Horizon, said. “After patients leave UPMC Horizon, they are still able to purchase breast milk if necessary.”

In the ICU, donor milk is intended to lower rates of serious complications, shorten hospital says, and increase rates of maternal breastfeeding at discharge.

For babies outside of the ICU, donor milk can help with certain conditions, sensitivities, or allergies, or it can serve as ‘bridge milk,’ referring to short term milk supplementation until breast milk comes naturally.

Through a grant from the Horizon Health Foundation, UPMC Horizon purchased a milk freezer, equipment, plus launched staff education initiatives, and will continue to provide donor milk in the hospital for years to come.

Read the full story here.