DUARTE, Calif., March 8, 2023 – During National Nutrition Month, Prolacta Bioscience®, the world’s leading hospital provider of 100% human milk-based nutritional products for critically ill, premature infants, recognizes the contributions of breast milk donors who have made an Exclusive Human Milk Diet (EHMD) possible for more than 90,000 vulnerable infants in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) throughout the world.1
Proper nutrition is critical for the growth and health of premature infants starting in their first days of life. Premature infants require significantly more calories and protein than healthy full-term infants due to the nutrition they miss in the third trimester, which can be provided by nutritional fortifiers that are added to mom’s own milk or donor breast milk.
Prolacta’s EHMD (mom’s own milk or donor breast milk plus Prolacta’s 100% human milk-based fortifiers) is clinically shown to support optimal growth and development, giving critically ill, premature infants the best chance for a healthy start in life.2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11
Prolacta Donor Spotlight: Shannon from Seattle
Shannon, a stay-at-home mother of two, found herself with such an oversupply of breast milk that she soon accumulated enough frozen milk to feed her younger daughter for more than a year after she stopped nursing. Knowing that fragile premature infants could benefit from breast milk donations, she sought out opportunities to find a donation program that was right for her family.
“Milk donation has been a life-changing experience,” Shannon said, noting that she recently donated her 34th cooler of breast milk to Tiny Treasures, one of Prolacta’s two milk banks that compensates donors $1.10 per ounce for their time and effort. “I truly enjoy being able to help fragile babies while helping my family financially.”
Prolacta Donor Spotlight: Tiffanie from Los Angeles
First-time mother Tiffanie said she had never before considered breast milk donation, nor did she know it was an option. “Once I realized I had way more milk than my son could consume, I started researching how I could help other moms and babies,” she said. “I didn’t want any of my ‘liquid gold’ to go to waste, and that’s when I found Prolacta.”
Helping critically ill, premature infants in the NICU has allowed Tiffanie to continue pumping, even after her son weaned months ago. “Babies are such a miracle and blessing, and although pumping can be challenging, it’s worth the time and effort when the reward is life-changing for other families,” she said.
“For premature infants, the nutrition received in the first days of life has a significant impact on their growth, brain, and body development and overall health for weeks, months, and even years to come,”10,12,13,14,15 said Melinda J. Elliott, chief medical officer at Prolacta and a practicing neonatologist. “Unlike with cow milk-based nutrition, with Prolacta’s EHMD [Protocol], fortification can safely begin as early as the first week of an infant’s life, which is important to achieve the best outcomes.”
Helping Baby Aria
For Mya, whose baby Aria received Prolacta’s fortifiers as part of an EHMD during her 110-day NICU stay, the gratitude is palpable. “Thanks to Prolacta’s donors, babies like Aria are able to benefit from a 100% breast milk-based diet, giving them the optimal nutrition they need to grow and get strong enough to go home, as well as become healthy toddlers, children, and adults in the future,” she said. Prolacta donors like Shannon and Tiffanie play a crucial role in providing nutrition for premature infants like Aria, who was born as a micropreemie at 27 weeks weighing only 1 lb 6 oz.
Today, Aria is a thriving toddler thanks in great part to the nutrition she received while in the NICU.
Our donors are an integral part of the Prolacta family, and we acknowledge the significant time and effort they spend donating their extra breast milk to help fragile infants in the NICU by compensating them,” said Susan Neumann, vice president of milk resourcing at Prolacta. “We’re grateful to be able to give our donors the choice to be compensated directly or have a charitable donation be made on their behalf, as well as give them a safe way to help vulnerable infants receive optimal nutrition.”
About Prolacta’s Human Milk-Based Nutritional Products
The major difference between cow milk-based and human milk-based nutritional products is the composition — notably, the bioactive components that are unique to human milk, which are thought to support infants’ immunity, development, growth, and long-term health.16 Prolacta's vat pasteurized, 100% human milk-based nutritional products retain higher bioactivity than products processed using other methods, including retort sterilization and ultra-high-temperature (UHT) processing.17,18,19
About Prolacta Bioscience
Prolacta Bioscience® Inc. is a privately held, global life sciences company dedicated to Advancing the Science of Human Milk® to improve the health of critically ill, premature infants. Prolacta’s 100% human milk-based nutritional products have been evaluated in more than 20 clinical studies published in peer-reviewed journals. More than 90,000 premature infants have benefited from Prolacta’s nutritional products worldwide to date.1 Established in 1999, Prolacta is the world’s leading provider of human milk-based nutritional products for hospital use and is also exploring the therapeutic potential of human milk across a wide spectrum of diseases. Prolacta maintains the industry’s strictest quality and safety standards for screening, testing, and processing donor human milk. Operating the world’s first pharmaceutical-grade human milk processing facilities, Prolacta uses vat pasteurization and a patented, FDA-reviewed manufacturing process to ensure pathogen inactivation while protecting the nutritional composition and bioactivity of its human milk-based products. Prolacta is a global company with headquarters in Duarte, California, and can be found online on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn.
# # #