Brookings Hospital Makes Donor Breast Milk Available for Babies in Need
- April 29, 2019
Brookings Hospital now has human donor breast milk available for babies medically in need who are born at New Beginnings Birth Center OB unit.
“As a Baby-Friendly Designated hospital, making donor breast milk available follows our commitment to support mothers and babies with breastfeeding,” said Obstetrics Director Mary Schwaegerl.
Based on the health benefits of breast milk, the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends all infants exclusively receive breast milk from their mothers for the first six months of life. If a baby cannot receive their mother’s breast milk, WHO recommends donated human milk as the next preferred nutrition option. Evidence-based research shows using human donor milk over formula reduces neonatal mortality rates for vulnerable newborns.
“Sometimes a baby is born who could medically benefit from immediate nutrition,” said Schwaegerl. “If their mother’s milk supply hasn’t come in yet, a physician may prescribe donor milk as an alternative to formula. This also helps Brookings Health System honor and support the mother’s feeding choice for her baby.”
Brookings Hospital receives the human donor milk supply from the Mother’s Milk Bank of Iowa, an accredited milk bank member of the Human Milk Banking Association of America (HMBANA). All milk dispensed from Brookings Hospital comes from carefully screened donors. It is pasteurized, tested for bacteria, frozen and marked with an expiration date.
“The quality-assurance measures taken by the Mother’s Milk Bank of Iowa ensures human donor milk fed to infants at New Beginnings Birth Center is safe,” said Schwaegerl.
New Beginnings Birth Center, has eight beds with five labor, delivery, recovery and postpartum (LDRP) suites. The unit provides full obstetrics services to expectant parents and enables area residents to deliver their baby close to home with a local physician. To learn more about New Beginnings Birth Center, please visit brookingshealth.org/OB.
About Brookings Health System
Brookings Health System, located in Brookings, South Dakota, includes a 49-bed hospital, the 79-bed The Neighborhoods at Brookview nursing home, Brookhaven Estates senior living apartments, Yorkshire Eye Clinic, and medical clinics in Arlington, White and Volga, South Dakota. It is a non-profit, city-owned facility that offers the community a full range of inpatient, outpatient, emergency and extended care services. Brookings Hospital provides local access to doctors in Brookings and offers robotic da Vinci surgery and Mako robotic-arm assisted procedures, making it one of the premier rural community hospitals in South Dakota. For more information about the services offered at Brookings Health System, please call (605) 696-9000 or visit us on the Web at brookingshealth.org.