The Indiana Mothers’ Milk Bank is partnering with the Indiana Blood Center in hopes of boosting breast milk donations.
This week the Indiana Mothers’ Milk Bank opened seven drop off centers in existing Indiana Blood Center locations, bringing the total milk donation sites in the state to 20.
The new locations are in Carmel, Columbus, Indianapolis, Fischers, Greenwood, Muncie and Terre Haute.
After a mother donates, the collected milk will be transported into the Indiana Mothers’ Milk Bank where it is pasteurized and sent to hospitals to feed premature or sick infants.
Indiana Mothers’ Milk Bank’s spokeswoman Carissa Hawkins says she hopes the new centers make it more convenient for mothers to donate.
“The goal of the partnership is for all of the Indiana Blood Center donor locations will house an Indiana Mothers’ Milk Bank freezer so that approved milk donors in and around Indianapolis and all the various places where the Blood Center has donor centers can take their milk and drop it off at the blood centers,” says Hawkins.
The Indiana Blood Centers are also providing blood tests if mothers want to be screened so they can become an approved donor.
Bloomington Area Birth Services’ lactation center clinical director Ann Marie Neeley says making screening process quicker will likely attract more donors.
“I think that being able to do blood testing at the blood centers is going to be very convenient for mothers to be able to go there, they will be able to get the blood test back sooner and they will be able to be a donor sooner,” says Neeley.
Indiana Blood Center’s spokeswoman Lucy Wehking says the new donation centers at Indiana Blood Centers will function the same as all other Mothers’ Milk Bank depots.
“The way it will work is an approved mother of Indiana Mothers’ Milk Bank can come into one of our Indiana Blood Center locations and just drop off milk,” Wehking says.