Saint Barnabas opens bank to store breast milk for mothers in need

Mother Laura Lomonte could not hold back her tears as she described how her twins received donated breast milk when she wasn’t able to produce any of her own.

According to the Human Milk Banking Association of North America, feeding breast milk to a premature baby can reduce the newborn’s risk of contracting common illnesses by 75%.

Saint Barnabas Medical Center partnered with Mothers’ Milk Bank Northeast to open up a human milk depot at the hospital. It’s where mothers who are nursing and producing more milk than they need can donate milk. Once the milk has been screened, it’ll be given to babies in need. Milk donor screenings are modeling after blood donations to ensure safety before the milk is dispensed to hospitals and families.

Doctors also stress that a milk bank is that safest way to receive milk and moms should rethink buying it online. Donating to the milk depot is free, but there is a processing fee of $3.90 for each ounce of milk dispensed.