HOW to go about getting milk from the Breast Milk Reserve Bank:
The bank supplies breast milk to premature babies in Dora Nginza Hospital, Life St George's Hospital, Greenacres Hospital and Uitenhage Provincial Hospital. Nurses will order the milk.
Sister Anne-Marie Oelofse, the manager of the Breast Milk Reserve Bank, explains how the process works.
"We want to help as many mommies as possible to breastfeed for as long as possible.
"Premature babies usually get about 1ml of milk per kilogram per hour.
"This means they get about 20ml on their first day and we increase it by 1ml every day."
She said they would provide breast milk for babies weighing less than 1.8kg. "We feed them for 14 days, although in some instances we exceed the two weeks," she said.
"We try to feed as many as we can."
Mothers whose babies are being treated at state hospitals receive the milk free, but the bank requires a donation from mothers in the private sector.
Who may donate breast milk?
BREAST Milk Reserve Bank manager Anne-Marie Oelofse explains how to donate breast milk and who may do so:
- Once a donor contacts us, we do a health screening.
- Smokers are excluded from donating breast milk.
- We also make sure our donors have a fairly healthy lifestyle and they must be HIV-negative.
- If you want to donate, you can call Anne-Marie on (041)995-9239.