Prolacta milk banks - Mothering Forums

View Poll Results: Would you donate to a milk bank?
Yes, no matter what- babies, or pharm research, I am ok with it 2 3.13%
Only for a non-profit company 43 67.19%
I would to any bank if I knew it was not going to bio-pharming 9 14.06%
no, because I am worried about unethical practices 10 15.63%
Voters: 64. You may not vote on this poll

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#1 of 63 Old 05-25-2006, 09:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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There is a trend of the for-profit bio-science bio-pharm company Prolacta soliciting birth centers, midwives, LLL groups for milk contracts.
I find it disturbing and have read many many articles on Prolacta and am not convinced that they are an ethical company. I am always suspicious at any company that targets midwives because they figure that the big hearts of midwives will be talked in to being a depot.
Anyone up on Prolacta in their community or seen their marketing techniques first hand??? http://www.ocregister.com/ocregister...le_1128779.php
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#2 of 63 Old 05-26-2006, 12:05 AM
 
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I'm still torn about this. I'd still much rather see direct mother-to-mother sharing of unpasturized breast milk

It's good that Prolacta will be making donor milk available to babies who would otherwise be getting formula, and it's good that they're making it easier for women to donate milk. It's not good that they might get fewer women to donate to non-profit milk banks.

My biggest concern is that moms of preemies might be encouraged to use Prolacta milk rather than pumping for their own babies- and that babies who COULD be getting fresh, raw milk from their own mothers will instead be getting pasturized donor milk.

Ruth, single mommy to 3 quasi-adults
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#3 of 63 Old 05-26-2006, 12:12 AM
 
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I am preparing to start donating milk (40 oz in freezer!) but am hoping for a direct donation. The whole idea of milk banks bothers me. I wish I could help those tiny preemies who need it the most, but our family struggles a lot to keep things together financially. We're students and we're uninsured.

It really bothers me to give my milk to a bank that will then sell it for a couple of bucks an ounce--accessible primrily to those who are well-off and/or have good insurance.

I do realize that milk banks operate at a loss, that they need to cover their processing costs, and that sometimes assistance is avialble to pay for donor milk. I know my position doesn't entirely make sense. But as much as I want to be a milk donor it just really bugs me to think about spending half an hour or more every day pumping and packaging and washing equipment for free and yet quite possibly not have my milk reach a baby who needs it simply because he or she was born to a medicaid mom at Detroit Receiving instead of to the BC/BS-covered mom at a fancy suburban hospital.

So, no I'd never donate to Prolacta. Not only does the concept of making human milk "better" freak me right out, but even donating to not-for-profit that will charge for my milk bugs me. I don't think anyone should have to pay for human milk, but if moeny is going to change hands, I definitely don't think that anyone but the mom providing the milk should be receiving money for it.
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#4 of 63 Old 05-26-2006, 12:51 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruthla
It's good that Prolacta will be making donor milk available to babies who would otherwise be getting formula, and it's good that they're making it easier for women to donate milk. It's not good that they might get fewer women to donate to non-profit milk banks.
Ruth, yes, I agree with the "concept" but formula is FREE at hospitals, and many mothers aware of the benefits of human milk will pump...and at $45 per ounce, who buys it???? Last I heard Prolacta would not disclose hospitals buying their product so is it going to preemies or being sold to companines mining the properties for research??
tie-dyed I understand ya, and I agree. Some of the aspects just don't sit right with me either....
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#5 of 63 Old 05-26-2006, 03:08 AM
 
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I didn't vote. I would probably donate my milk to any of the listed venues, but I'd prefer to donate it to someone I knew or to a non-profit bank (which I actually do donate to).

But donating it for research I'm good with- as long as they're upfront. Not Prolacta, maybe, but other groups perhaps. But I'd only do it if there wasn't a milk bank in my area to donate to.

Julia
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#6 of 63 Old 05-26-2006, 03:19 AM
 
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If they can make additives for preemies that are made from human milk instead of cow's milk, that's great. But they should pay the women, not the hospitals, that they get the milk from. ONLY, my understanding is that you can't pay for human tissue...which breastmilk is.

Or they should pay no one, and they should be not-for-profit. But my understanding of this company is that they don't believe in doing things not-for-profit.

Yuck.

My baby receives donor milk and has even when we were uninsured and he was on Medicaid. There is no way I can ever express enough gratitude for what other mothers have done for my baby.

Other than donate my own milk should I be blessed with another child.

mv
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#7 of 63 Old 05-26-2006, 04:35 AM
 
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Take a look at the Associate $5,000 donor category:

http://aap.org/donate/fcfhonorroll.htm

Look what kind of company they keep....

Puke.

mv
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#8 of 63 Old 05-26-2006, 09:27 AM
 
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I donated my freezer stash yesterday to a low-supply mom! I'm all for mom-to-mom, with no pasteurization and no middle man.
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#9 of 63 Old 05-26-2006, 09:54 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mamaverdi
Take a look at the Associate $5,000 donor category:
http://aap.org/donate/fcfhonorroll.htm
Look what kind of company they keep....
wow. I am telling ya, this company must have bought the formula rep and marketing handbook
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#10 of 63 Old 05-26-2006, 04:13 PM
 
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I'm very interested in that others are aware of this and discussing it.

I have a lot of problems with the Prolacta enterprise, too many to list here.

Keep the discussion going, and keep spreading the word about the truth behind Prolocata.

Janice
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#11 of 63 Old 05-26-2006, 05:00 PM
 
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I would definetly donate mom to mom if the situation came up with someone local to me. I would probably donate to a not for profit even if they were charging a little bit for the milk to cover there costs (I think that's only fair) I've thought about that a lot and wished there was a milk bank near me. I would never let my milk anywhere near an operation like that though.

Let there be beauty and strength, power and compassion, honor and humility, mirth and reverence within you.)0(
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#12 of 63 Old 05-26-2006, 05:08 PM
 
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I am a big supporter of mum to mum. No milk of mine is going to a middle man, profit or not.
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#13 of 63 Old 05-26-2006, 05:34 PM
 
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I donate my extra EBM to mamas in need. I feel it's better that my milk is not pasteurized and that there is not a financial stress put on the family that needs it. I couldn't believe that milk banks charge between $3 and $4 per ounce plush shipping. It just makes so much more sense to me to donate it privately to mamas that can't produce enough milk or can't bf their babes.
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#14 of 63 Old 05-26-2006, 06:30 PM
 
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How does mom-to-mom donation work? I would love to have donated my extra milk to a mother in need so her baby could have had that instead of formula. Are pediatricians supportive of it? Does one need to undergo testing first or is that dependant on the mother of the to-be-donated-to baby?
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#15 of 63 Old 05-26-2006, 07:22 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by graceshappymum
I am a big supporter of mum to mum. No milk of mine is going to a middle man, profit or not.
: That's the only way I'd do it...give it directly to another mom in need. Kind'a wish I knew of one, I have tons of milk!!

~Marie: Mom to DS(17), DS(16), DD(14), DD(10), DD(8) & someone new on the way.
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#16 of 63 Old 05-26-2006, 07:23 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mamanurse
I couldn't believe that milk banks charge between $3 and $4 per ounce plush shipping.
darling, $45 per ounce is what Prolacta charges....:
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#17 of 63 Old 05-26-2006, 07:32 PM
 
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Originally Posted by KeysMama
darling, $45 per ounce is what Prolacta charges....:
WOW!!!!!

~Marie: Mom to DS(17), DS(16), DD(14), DD(10), DD(8) & someone new on the way.
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#18 of 63 Old 05-26-2006, 08:23 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SaraFR
How does mom-to-mom donation work? I would love to have donated my extra milk to a mother in need so her baby could have had that instead of formula. Are pediatricians supportive of it? Does one need to undergo testing first or is that dependant on the mother of the to-be-donated-to baby?
Sara, it is certainly looked down upon by LLLI and the medical establishment, BUT there are Peds that would test the donor mother and assist with milk sharing. Few, but there are some. Also, sometimes it is a group effort, like a group of friends, family or support group. My SIL donated to a mom on this board and volunteered her diet info, medical history and kept the milk frozen which can and does kill some bacterias and viruses.

Janice, thanks for joining the loop, I was expecting you my dear
Mirine
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#19 of 63 Old 05-26-2006, 09:27 PM
 
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Wow, Prolacta is disgusting Thanks for the education.
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#20 of 63 Old 05-26-2006, 10:16 PM
 
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Originally Posted by KeysMama
Sara, it is certainly looked down upon by LLLI and the medical establishment, BUT there are Peds that would test the donor mother and assist with milk sharing.
LLLI isn't against milk sharing. They are against *casual* milk sharing. In this day and age, it is a risky practice.

Here is a press release on the topic:
http://www.lalecheleague.org/Release/milksharing.html
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#21 of 63 Old 05-26-2006, 11:47 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KeysMama
darling, $45 per ounce is what Prolacta charges....:
That's so messed up.

As far as donating mother-to-mother, I've donated to two mamas. One was adopting and had never carried a pg and had no hope for producing enough milk for her baby. The other had a breast reduction and also thought she would have to supplement.

One of the moms just trusted that someone who was willing to donate her milk would not have any communicable diseases. She did not care to see a copy of my HIV test or Hepatitis vaccine record. She also did not want a statement from my physician about my general health. The other mama wanted all the aforementioned and I provided them for her, as I have that info. on hand for work and was tested during my pg. I was also very straight-forward with info. on my diet and daily habits (like coffee and the occasional drink).


Anyway, I think it's great to donate mom-to-mom. I've never heard of a ped. saying anything, but I would personally not tell my ped. I would just tell them that the babe eats bm.
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#22 of 63 Old 05-27-2006, 11:37 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Bear's Mama
LLLI isn't against milk sharing. They are against *casual* milk sharing. In this day and age, it is a risky practice.

Here is a press release on the topic:
http://www.lalecheleague.org/Release/milksharing.html
Yes yes, that is what I was meaning to say, thanks for clarifying!
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#23 of 63 Old 05-27-2006, 01:19 PM
 
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Personally, I would do mom-to-mom donation if I knew a local mom who needed it and would take my word for it that I'm clean, or would pay for testing (I'm uninsured right now, but did have all the testing during pg#1 and early pg#2).

Pumping is hard work for me mentally, so I would need to know it was going to my own baby or someone I "know"... and there's the fact that I have ample supply but even with a PIS I don't get as much out as an efficient nursing babe.

There is finally a milk bank in Indiana but I've heard some conflicting reports about it and the hospitals that run it re: breastfeeding and making moms supplement etc so I'm not going to go to the trouble of pumping for them. If I had extra milk in the freezer I would donate it I guess. A friend donated over 400oz this year to the milk bank but they won't take any more from her now because her dd just turned 1yo.

I would not donate to Prolacta, just not a good feeling about it. And I don't like them fortifying it... that should be done "if" the baby receiving the milk needs it. Which if a mom of a full-term baby donates the milk, it makes sense it might need fortifying for a preemie just because the donater isn't making preemie breastmilk, but that should be a case-by-case basis- not making it sound like it's not good enough without extra stuff added!

... and I'm :Puke a the AAP support list.
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#24 of 63 Old 05-27-2006, 02:30 PM
 
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I would also much rather donate directly to a baby who needed it.

Midwife (CPM, LDM) and homeschooling mama to:
14yo ds
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#25 of 63 Old 05-27-2006, 06:05 PM
 
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Originally Posted by phathui5
I would also much rather donate directly to a baby who needed it.
And you will... whenver we get pg again that is!

ETA: these profit companies are now getting the milk from the nonprofit companies and making a killing, so donating direclty to a mama in need is a far better idea.

hh2.gif

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#26 of 63 Old 05-27-2006, 06:13 PM
 
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If I knew someone who needed milk I would be more than pleased to make a direct donation, but I am not going to let people make money off my milk and send some more mom to the poorhouse in the process. Also pasteurization kills off so many things in the milk and I am worried it will make hospitals only accept pasteurized milk and turn down direct donation milk, kwim?
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#27 of 63 Old 05-28-2006, 06:33 PM - Thread Starter
 
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To the mama who mentioned what might be lost to pasteurization and processing:

Effect of Prolacta Pasteurization Conditions on Human Milk Constituents

Parameter ~ Untreated Milk ~Pasteurized ~% Remaining
Immunoglobulin A (mg/mL) ~315 ~230 ~ 73
Secretory IgA ~~ 462 ~ 379 ~ 82
Lysozyme (IU/mL) ~39,000 ~22,000 ~ 57
Lactoferrin (g/100 mL) ~ 0.24 ~0.033 ~ 14
Vitamin B6 (µg/100 mL) ~ 8.8 ~ 7.8 ~ 89

sorry, I can't get the table to show properly!

And what do your all think the long term effect of a depot making $2 per ounce collected would be? Slick marketing? Does it sound like a MLM to you???
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#28 of 63 Old 05-29-2006, 02:04 AM
 
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have given and received mama-to-mama milk, and will promote the value of this system until i die!

no way would i give to prolacta, or any milk bank, really. just not the way i operate.
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#29 of 63 Old 05-29-2006, 02:35 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mysticmomma
And you will... whenver we get pg again that is!

ETA: these profit companies are now getting the milk from the nonprofit companies and making a killing, so donating direclty to a mama in need is a far better idea.
You mean to say that the milk banks that are part of HMBANA are giving milk to for-profit companies?

Where is your proof for this?

mv
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#30 of 63 Old 05-29-2006, 02:50 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mamaverdi
You mean to say that the milk banks that are part of HMBANA are giving milk to for-profit companies?

Where is your proof for this?

mv
No the HMBANA milk banks are not giving or selling the milk that they get, to Prolacta. They have issued a statement that they are not doing this.

I think what the writer meant is, that in some instances, mothers who would otherwise have given their milk to the HMBANA banks, may now donate to Prolacta, just because they don't know any better or see any difference between the two (if they are not informed about Prolacta by anyone other than Prolacta). Prolacta depots may be located more closer geographically, and they certainly will have larger budgets to contact and recruit potential donors than the not-for-profit HMBANA banks, so they will snatch up the donors.

Just my interpretation of the comment.
Janice
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