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Mothers' Milk Bank of MS Opens Depot at ARMC

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Mothers' Milk Bank of MS Opens Depot at ARMC

Mothers’ Milk Bank of Mississippi has added Meridian to its growing list of depot locations around the state with a newly established drop-off location at Anderson Regional Medical Center’s Lactation Center.

A non-profit organization, Mothers’ Milk Bank of Mississippi accepts, pasteurizes and dispenses donor human milk by physician prescription, primarily to premature and ill infants.

“Mississippi has the highest prematurity rate in the country. That means that we have many premature babies who need life-saving human milk. Often, the moms of these babies have difficulty producing their own milk at first. That's where we come in. We screen moms who have extra milk by interview, medical record review from their healthcare providers and blood tests. The donated milk is then pasteurized and tested for safety before being dispensed to the NICUs around our state. Donor moms are vital to our mission. Without the donors, there is no milk,” said Linda Pittman, RN, BSN, IBCLC, executive director of Mothers’ Milk Bank of Mississippi.

Anderson Regional Medical Center’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit cares for premature, underweight or sick babies who require the highest level of care. Human milk is important for premature infants because it provides both nutrition and immunities that cannot be matched by formula.

“Human milk is life- changing. It is full of immune system boosters, infection-fighting factors, and unique proteins, fats, carbohydrates, and enzymes necessary for preemies to survive,” said Reba Lee, RN, IBCLC (International Board Certified Lactation Consultant).

Infants who weigh less than three pounds require as little as 1-2 ml of milk per feeding. Even in these small amounts, donated milk makes a big difference and helps premature babies have a healthy start.

Babies who are given human milk have:

• Less risk of SIDS, illness and infections

• Lower hospital admission rates

• Less gas, diarrhea and constipation

• Less asthma and allergies

• Less rashes

• Less childhood cancers

• Less diabetes and obesity

• Better oral development, brain development and motor skills

• Better response to immunizations

• Better protection against diseases that last into adulthood

Mothers who pump extra milk—more than what their own babies can consume—undergo a brief screening and blood test to become a donor. Frozen milk can be dropped off at the Lactation Center at Anderson Regional Medical Center, or women may call 601.553.6034 for information about shipping milk to Mothers’ Milk Bank of Mississippi headquarters in Flowood.