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MHP Partners with Milk Bank

Mahaska Health Partnership Partners with Milk Bank of Iowa

The Mahaska Health Partnership Birthing Center is a milk bank collection site for the University of Iowa’s Mothers Milk Bank of Iowa program.

“We are excited to partner with the University to extend the collection of donated breast milk to Southeast Iowa,” MHP Birthing Center Director Chyann Vroegh, RNC-OB, BSN, said. “Decades of research has proven the benefits of human milk for infants, especially those born prematurely.”

The Milk Bank of Iowa was started in 2002 with the purpose of collecting and supplying donated human milk to premature infants and others who need it. It utilizes surplus breast milk from approved donors to supplement feedings for premature infants or infants whose mothers are breast feeding but must stop for a period of time; perhaps due to health concerns or other issues.

To become an approved breast milk donor, a woman must be in good health, be nursing and willing to share extra milk. Donors must be non-smokers, not taking certain medications and adhere to strict policies related to alcohol consumption as well as milk pumping and storage policies.

“Most of the time, donors are women who, for whatever reason, have an abundance of breast milk. When a woman produces considerably more milk than her infant is able to consume, the milk bank is a great option,” Vroegh explained.

“Donors are thoroughly screened, similar to blood donor screening, before they can become a milk bank donor. Women making deposits at the MHP location have been previously screened by the University of Iowa and approved as donors,” Vroegh said.

As a milk bank collection site, the MHP Birthing Center has acquired a special freezer where milk will be stored and a nurse is onsite 24/7 to accept collections. The Birthing Center does request that donors call prior to making a drop off.

“Through our partnership with the University, we hope more women in our area will consider donating their excess breast milk,” Vroegh stressed. “The screening process can be completed locally and once approved; the collection and donation process is fairly simple.”

For more information about becoming a milk bank donor, contact the University of Iowa at 1-877-891-5347 or click here.