Puducherry: In a move aimed at nourishing infants whose mothers are not healthy enough to feed their babies, the Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research (Jipmer) has established a mother’s milk bank in Puducherry.
This mother’s milk bank was inaugurated last Wednesday and is named 'Amudham Thaippal Maiyam' (ATM).
This 'ATM' will also offer breastfeeding counselling to mothers.
All healthy lactating mothers with healthy babies, who are voluntarily willing to give their extra breast milk for other babies without compromising the nutritional needs of their own baby, can donate milk.
The donors can include mothers attending baby clinics, mothers whose babies are in neonatal intensive care units, those who have lost their babies, but are willing to donate their milk, or lactating working staff in the hospital, and motivated mothers from the community.
A donor using illegal drugs, tobacco products, alcohol or HIV positive cannot donate milk.
"As 30% of 1,500 babies born per month in Jipmer are of low birth weight and mostly preterm, there is a strong need to establish a human breast milk bank at NICU (neonatal intensive care unit) to strengthen neonatal services and save preterm babies," Jipmer director S C Parija told media on Monday.
"If mother's milk is unavailable or insufficient, the next option is to use pasteurized donor human milk," he further added.