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#1 of 8 Old 06-19-2006, 03:12 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I posted this on the Lactavist site...I am going to copy it here too...PLEASE send your questions and I will truthfull answer them...I hate it that people are listening and believing unture things about Prolacta Milk Banks

Erin Daugherty, RN,BSN,Lactation Intern, Milk Bank Director

Copy:

I am an NICU RN and I run the other milk bank in Orange County at the Birth Connection in Fullerton. We are a "Prolacta" milk bank also.

It absolutely breaks my heart that people would rather believe rumors about Prolacta than actaully ask someone who works for them if the rumors are true. However, I am going to try to break up your bad feeling towards us....

True, we are a for profit milk bank. We are paid $2 an ounce for the milk we collect. That is the only truthful statement I read above. I am an RN working about 30 hours a week to run this milk bank....I do not do this for free...that is where the $2 an ounce comes in. Do any of you want to give you professional services 30 hours a week for free?? If so, please send me your application!

Anyways, the Prolacta milk is ONLY for premature babies in the NICU. Not for well babies, not for adults....only preemies. I don't know what you know about premature mother's milk. When a baby is born severly premature the mother's milk is PERFECT rich colostrum which is perfect for her baby HOWEVER after approx. 10 days, the mother's milk matures. This happens because of the grim reality that without Level III NICU, the baby would nornmally die. BUT here in America and other areas of the world we have wonderful NICU's to keep these babies alive.

SO enter a huge problem: In about 10 days the mother's milk does not have enough nutrients to properly nourish the baby. Mainly protein, calcium and phosphorus. REMEMBER these babies are born 10 to 15 weeks premature, they are not sposed to be drinking anything....they are sposed to be getting nutrients from the placenta. So, what is currently done is a product called Human Milk Fortifier, manufactured by Similac or Enfamil....which is COW"S MILK based is added to the mother's milk or the HMBANA milk to add the necessary nutrients. For those of you that live in Orange County, this is how CHOC does it: They add the formula company powder, cow's milk based to the breastmilk.

Everyone reading this post knows the dangers of just one exposure to cow's milk. Especially for a preemie. Enter Prolacta. Prolacta does not just pasturize the milk, slap a price tag on it and ship it. THEY use human milk to make fortified human milk for preemies. They have 20 calorie human milk which is ALL human milk, they have 24 calories human milk with extra calcium, protein and phosphorus to meet a preemies needs and they have a HUMAN milk fortifier that is human milk based.

Again, ONLY Prolacta has a human milk fortifier that is made from human milk. ALL other fortifiers are made from Cow's milk. Hospitals that use Porlacta are the ONLY hospitals where the severly premature infants are truly 100% breast milk fed.

PLEASE visit Prolacta's website and look up the product specification sheets under products to learn the truth. OR please PM me...I would rather the questions about the company be answered publically than be shocked when I hear terrible rumors about how we are just doing this to make a buck. I support this company because as an RN in an NICU this is the ONLY way a preemie can be fed with total human milk.

oh and if you want a comparason list of the formula company's fortifier ingredients compared to ours...please just ask!!

__________________________
Erin : Mommy to Zoë Jewel (2-16-04), totally natural birth and and TTC Angel #2
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#2 of 8 Old 07-30-2007, 08:40 PM
 
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Hi Erin,

By now I'm sure you know about my website/blog at: http://www.breastfeedingsymbol.org/blog/. In it, you can find out about how much Prolacta is charging for their human milk fortifier, along with other information you may not have been aware of before.

I am not under the impression that everyone who acquires milk for Prolacta knows everything about how Prolacta operates their business, so I will not fault them for trying to make a living. I realize that you (and everybody else) needs to get their money from somewhere.

This is what I have a problem with:

(1) You complain that you have to make a living, well the donors have to make a living too! Pumping is HARD WORK, very unpleasant work. The donors are not being compensated for their time or their milk. They are choosing to give their milk out of the kindness of their hearts because they want to do something nice for someone else, not because they want to help anyone make money off it. If they knew money were to be made, guess what? They'd probably want that money for themselves. Doesn't that make sense? Here's a question for you: If YOU were a donor, and you knew money could be made from your milk, wouldn't YOU want some of that money?

(2) I think human milk fortifier made out of human milk, in theory, is not a bad idea. I think it may be a much better alternative to the bovine-based human milk fortifiers made by formula companies right now. HOWEVER, the way Prolacta is choosing to acquire the raw material to make their HMF, the fact that they are not open with their donors about what will happen to their milk, and the fact that they don't bother compensating their donors for all their hard work is a BIG problem.

(3) Prolacta doesn't list the price of their human milk fortifier anywhere on their website, and they're not open about it at all. It is almost "classified information." What they charge is actually $6.25/milliliter or $184.83/ounce. Does that seem "reasonable" to you? If you needed it for your baby, would you be able to afford it? What if you needed it to save your baby's life and you didn't have insurance? (Working in a hospital, I'm sure you know already that many parents of babies who end up in NICUs do not have any insurance and would not be able to afford this HMF.)

(4) This is not even including the fact that now I'm reading about how Prolacta is trying to get components in human milk PATENTED. WTH? Is that even possible? So, every time a woman breastfeeds her child she's going to have to pay Prolacta royalties???? Another BIG problem.

Look, I realize you have a stake in this, and this is not a personal attack against you, but please realize who you are doing business with. If you think what Prolacta is doing to their milk donors and HMF recipients is defensible, I can't help you.

ETA: I realize your post is very old, so I am willing to concede that if you've learned more since then and are no longer affiliated with Prolacta, then please pass this message along to others you know. Thanks.
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#3 of 8 Old 07-31-2007, 01:55 AM
 
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The cost sounds like a medical intervention cost. So while that is silly for milk which many give for free, when used as a medical intervention to prevent NEC and keep very small babies and hope alive, it seems reasonable to me, as long as insurance comanies are paying for it and not Mommy's pocket book.

That being said, I hope there is a deeply discounted or free service for those who cannot afford it.
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#4 of 8 Old 07-31-2007, 02:05 AM
 
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Non-profits make money too. They just don't make money for share holders. Plenty of non-profits in fact have very healthy salaries for their employees. There is no reason that Prolacta could not have set their company up to be a non-profit, make money, and help itty-bitty people too.
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#5 of 8 Old 07-31-2007, 03:06 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RootSnort View Post
The cost sounds like a medical intervention cost. So while that is silly for milk which many give for free, when used as a medical intervention to prevent NEC and keep very small babies and hope alive, it seems reasonable to me, as long as insurance comanies are paying for it and not Mommy's pocket book.

That being said, I hope there is a deeply discounted or free service for those who cannot afford it.
I honestly don't know if there is, but I'll bet finding out is a long, involved process.

What if no such discount exists? Well, for starters, the HMF made by Prolacta would only be accessible to those who could either afford to pay $184.83/ounce for it or those whose insurance covered it. For the insurance holders, I have no idea what insurance does/does not cover, but for the people paying out-of-pocket, that would exclude the vast majority of consumers.
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#6 of 8 Old 07-31-2007, 05:31 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mamaverdi View Post
Non-profits make money too. They just don't make money for share holders. Plenty of non-profits in fact have very healthy salaries for their employees. There is no reason that Prolacta could not have set their company up to be a non-profit, make money, and help itty-bitty people too.
You make a good point.
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#7 of 8 Old 07-31-2007, 11:19 PM
 
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Originally Posted by MamaBear1976 View Post
I honestly don't know if there is, but I'll bet finding out is a long, involved process.

What if no such discount exists? Well, for starters, the HMF made by Prolacta would only be accessible to those who could either afford to pay $184.83/ounce for it or those whose insurance covered it. For the insurance holders, I have no idea what insurance does/does not cover, but for the people paying out-of-pocket, that would exclude the vast majority of consumers.
Well, they don't talk about it on their website, so I'll bet they don't. However, for those Moms who don't have insurance, I suspect those babies qualift for Medicaid. And so the government will pcik up the tab if it is prescribed. It is an FDA regulated product.
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#8 of 8 Old 07-31-2007, 11:29 PM
 
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Originally Posted by RootSnort View Post
Well, they don't talk about it on their website, so I'll bet they don't. However, for those Moms who don't have insurance, I suspect those babies qualift for Medicaid. And so the government will pcik up the tab if it is prescribed. It is an FDA regulated product.
I think in order to qualify for Medicaid, your total net worth (property + liquid assets -- savings/checking account + any investments you might have, like a 401(k)) needs to be less than around $200 or something really ridiculous like that. So, you could still be really poor and not qualify for it.

Please, somebody, educate me with a link on what a person needs to do to qualify for Medicaid. I've known many people who did not qualify and they are as poor as church mice.
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