A mum has told the Scottish Parliament about the importance of a breast milk bank in saving the life of one of her twins, born 16 weeks prematurely.
Baby Emma became seriously ill shortly after her birth and mum Lynsey was not producing enough milk to feed both Emma and her twin brother. “She would not be here today if she hadn’t received milk from the Scottish centre,” Lynsey said.
MPs were also told that the centre saves the lives of dozens of seriously ill babies every year. Breastmilk is packed with antibodies and nutrients that help protect babies and encourage their growth. Begun in 1978 as a freezer in a hospital, the Greater Glasgow and Clyde Donor Milk Bank now has around 50 donors and three industrial-sized freezers.
The coordinator of the bank, Debbie Barnet, explained how the centre has leapt forward in just three years. “We used to have about 40 babies a year getting the milk. Now it’s double that and the number of donors has increased from about 10 a year to 50,” she said. “All this happened in just two or three years and the supplies normally go to babies who are seriously ill.”
Debbie also explained that a wide range of women donated, including those who have milk their babies aren’t able to take or simply “out of kindness”.
Have you donated breastmilk? Or have you used a breastmilk bank for your baby?