Milk Donor FAQs

Milk donor FAQs

Do I need to live near the milk bank or a depot to donate?

Donor screening takes place over the phone and through email, so we are happy to talk with potential donors regardless of where they live. We can send boxes and prepaid Federal Express labels so that you can easily ship your milk to us. Of course, if you would like to drop off milk at the milk bank or a depot, that’s always OK. We love to meet our donors!

Do I need to send the minimum donation of 150 oz. all at once?

The first time you send in milk, we ask for at least 100 oz. After that the minimum is 100 oz. per shipment. We will accept any amount from bereaved donors.

How long can I be a donor?

Once donor screening is finished, there is no limit on how long you can be a donor. We are happy to accept any milk that is pumped during the time that you are pumping for that baby.

Why is my medication a reason for deferral?

We follow different guidelines than you might see in other places because of the fragile health of the babies who receive donor milk. Something may be perfectly safe for your healthy baby, but not safe for the babies receiving donor milk.

Can you use my prenatal blood work instead of doing a new blood test?

Unfortunately not. The blood test is the last step in donor screening because we need to receive the first donation within 30 days of the test being done. Also, there are some tests we require that are rarely done during the prenatal period.

Can I pick where my milk goes?

We are not able to earmark milk from a particular donor to go to a specific place. Our first priority is to provide donor milk to the most fragile babies. When you donate, you are increasing the overall supply of milk, which helps babies everywhere.

How does pasteurization affect breast milk?

All donor milk is pasteurized in order to eliminate bacteria or other infecting organisms that may have been present. A small percentage of nutritional and immunological properties is destroyed by pasteurization, but pasteurized milk retains many of its most beneficial qualities. It contains many special properties that cannot be duplicated by commercial milk formulas.

Are milk donors paid?

We do not offer financial reimbursement. However, we are happy to send breast milk storage bags to any donor who would like them. We also cover all the costs of donor screening and shipping the milk.

Is my donation tax-deductible?

The IRS does not allow a deduction for any kind of human tissue. You can deduct the cost of your breast pump and bags if you purchased them yourself.

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