The first and most important thing is to make sure that breast feeding your infant is established before you decide to donate any excess milk. We only want your excess breast milk after your baby is fully fed. You can donate excess newly expressed milk or previously collected frozen milk up to 10 months from date of expression as long as it is clearly marked with the time, month, day and year of expression. You can expect the entire donation qualification process to take about 2 - 6 weeks. You will receive step-by-step information as you progress through the qualification process so you know exactly where you are in the process and what to expect next.
2: Online Application and Review
In order to be eligible to donate your extra breast milk, you must first complete an online application. The application includes a Consent (to donate) Agreement and a medical history survey with about 50 questions similar to questions you answer prior to donating blood. It will take about 20 minutes. Once your application is processed, you will receive an email from your milk bank with detailed information on next steps. You can expect to hear back within 5 days of submitting your application.
3: Medical Confirmation Forms
The milk you donate will be used to create nutritional formulations for critically-ill premature infants. To ensure the quality of the product, we require that the donor has her medical provider and her infant's pediatrician sign a confirmation form ensuring that both mother and baby are healthy and it is okay for mother to donate her excess milk.
4: Donor Testing
We will arrange for a screening blood test by a national laboratory at no charge to you. At the same time, you will be asked to provide a cheek swab to create a DNA identity profile. Later, when you ship in your donation, the DNA in the milk will be matched to your DNA identity profile to ensure we only receive milk from donors that have been screened. This is a critical step to ensure the safety of the milk that will be used to treat fragile premature infants.
5: Delivery of Donation
Once you are qualified, you will receive notification with detailed instructions on how to pack and deliver the milk to the milk bank, or ship to Prolacta's processing facility. At this time your milk bank will provide you with additional breast milk storage bags and milk collection and storage instructions.