"Prioritize donor milk like we prioritize donor blood"
Human milk is a “a lifesaving intervention for premature infants” but human donor milk in NICUs isn’t always accessible to fragile babies who might need this liquid gold. Indeed, in some cases families are not even aware that donor milk is an option for their baby while in the NICU. In the article below, Jennifer Canvasser, founder and executive director of NEC Society, shares these challenges and advocates that we need to “prioritize donor milk like we prioritize donor blood” for babies in the NICU.
Jennifer founded NEC Society after her son Micah tragically passed away from complications with NEC, a devastating gut infection, shortly before his first birthday. NEC Society is a nonprofit dedicated to “building a world without necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC) through research, advocacy, and education.” Mothers’ milk and pasteurized donor milk offer the most protection against NEC. But Jennifer shares that while there was never a question of the NICU having enough donated blood for the lifesaving blood transfusions Micah required, the NICU did not provide access to donor milk at that time. Now Jennifer fights to change this access and awareness, advocating for “equitable access to donor milk for all infants.”
Read her article here:
*article and photos courtesy of Jennifer Canvasser and NEC Society