Our depot provides storage and shipping of approved donors' milk to the Mothers' Milk Bank Northeast. It is managed by the Pioneer Valley Breastfeeding Coalition and housed at Northampton Area Pediatrics. You can read about the opening of the depot in this Daily Hampshire Gazette article.
Mothers who wish to donate milk can contact the Mothers’ Milk Bank Northeast (email@example.com; 617-527-6263; http://milkbankne.org/) to begin donor screening. Approved donors wishing to use the Northampton depot may contact Ashley or Lauren (firstname.lastname@example.org; (413) 274-8465).
Milk depots are places where approved milk bank donors can conveniently drop off their breastmilk for shipment to the milk bank. They create awareness of the value of breastfeeding and of the life-saving power of donor milk, and increase the number of donors from the region in which they’re located. Our depot is the second to open in Massachusetts, and serves Western Massachusetts donors.
Donor milk banking is a way of providing human milk to premature and very sick infants in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs). It’s provided as a supplement – not a replacement – for preterm babies whose mothers aren’t able to provide enough milk.
Donor milk can be life-saving for preterm infants. It is especially protective against a life-threatening condition called necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC), which affects one in ten of the smallest preterm infants and is fatal in one of seven cases. Donor breastmilk is estimated to lower the risk of this condition by 79%. It also lowers hospital costs by reducing costs for care and shortening hospital stays.
Donor milk is rapidly becoming the standard supplement to mothers' milk for preterm infants in NICUs. Sixteen New England hospitals, including Baystate Medical Center, have made donor milk the standard care for their youngest patients.
Learn more about donor milk banking at the website of the Human Milk Banking Association of North America.