Human Milk Bank

Donate breast milk and save a baby’s life!

India’s first Human Milk Bank was established in 1989 at Sion Hospital. Nearly 3000 to 5000 babies benefit from the services of this milk bank every year. Nearly 800 to 1200 liters of human milk each year is received and feed to sick and vulnerable babies in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. 
At the Comprehensive Lactation Management Center (Human Milk Bank), new mothers are provided support to breastfeed their babies, to express milk, and donate excess milk for other sick babies in the hospital. Click here  to know more about Comprehensive Lactation Management Centers in India.

Breastfeeding is the best feeding. Mother’s milk provides nutrition, helps babies grow, and protects them from infection and diseases.  

Breastfeeding benefits the mother and the baby!  

Breastfeeding is even more important for sick babies and those born premature. Mother’s milk gives them a better chance of survival and early discharge from the hospital. 

A large number of sick babies admitted in the hospital are not able to receive their mother’s milk because of many reasons. The milk donated by other mothers can save their lives. Once the mother  donate her milk, utmost care is taken to make sure that the milk is safe and that it is provided to babies who need it the most. 

A lot of sick and vulnerable babies are born in Sion hospital every day! 

Every donation will help save a baby’s life. 

Donating milk does not compromise the supply of milk for own baby. More you express, more milk will be produced to help you feed your baby without hindrance. 

Click here to know more about what happens in a Comprehensive Lactation Management Center  

How to donate milk 

Donate your milk today!

Interested in donating human milk? – Fill this form    to find out if you are eligible to donate. (Google form for donor eligible online consent form signing )

Storing and labelling breast milk to donate to a CLMC

  • Fresh breast milk can be stored at room temperature for 3 to 4 hours or in a refrigerator at 4 to 8°C for 24 hours. It can be stored for three months if kept in the deep freezer at -20°C. However, in order to prevent contamination, it is always safer to send the stored milk to the CLMC within 15 days of expression.  The milk meant for donation should be stored in the home refrigerator’s deep freezer section at  -4 to -8°C.
  • You can add freshly expressed breast milk to already cooled or frozen milk, however, it is best to cool down the newly expressed milk first before adding it to older stored milk. Please keep sufficient clean and sterile containers to store freshly expressed milk. Mention the date and time of expression on the pooled container and store it in the deep freezer section within 24 hours. 
  • While labelling, write the date of first expression and storage on the container. 
Containers to be used for storage
  • You can store your milk in disposable bags specifically designed for breast milk, such as Medela, Ardo, Mothercare etc.
  • Clean and sterile stainless steel or BPA-free polypropylene container which are food grade plastic containers and have a high-quality tight lid.
  • Containers used to store human milk and breast pump milk collection kits must be completely dismantled, washed in hot soapy water, and rinsed in the sink or washed in a dishwasher. After washing, the equipment should be thoroughly air dried or dried with paper towels. It is recommended to sterile containers using steam sterilizers. In case you do not have a steam sterilizer, then you can clean the bottle in warm soapy water and immerse it in boiling water for 10 minutes. Completely air dry before use. Do not use chemical disinfection for your containers because the disinfectant can expose the baby to the risk of either inadequately clean containers or residual chemical disinfectant.
  • At the time of transportation, make sure that milk packets and frozen ice packs are placed properly in the icebox so that there is minimal air space and cold chain (frozen state) is maintained. 

What happens at the Human milk bank:

Steps taken in the Comprehensive Lactation Management Center regarding the mother’s donated milk. 

Still have questions? You can reach out to us at:

Human Milk Bank
Dept of Neonatology
Dr Swati Manerkar 
Incharge HOD and Professor
Tel no: 022-24063154/022-24063157