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BY UNA LU
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Is sharing human breast milk a good idea? Groups dedicated to sharing and using donated breast milk are fast-growing on Facebook. But U.S. and Canadian officials are raising a red flag over the practice. CTV reports the health authorities ‘concerns.
“TheCanadian Pediatric Society wants to see a milk bank in every province, but it must be patronized breast milk and mothers will have to be screened just like we screen blood donors. Recently Health Canada has issue advising parents not to get any donated breast milk via internet because no one could guarantee its safe.”
What’s the potential risk? EmaxHealth details the FDA’s statement.
“These risks include exposure to infectious diseases, including HIV, to chemical contaminants, such as some illegal drugs, and to a limited number of prescription drugs that might be in the human milk”
Calling the warnings unnecessary, breast milk-share advocate Emma Kwasnica tells Toronto Sun, there’s nothing to worry about.
“Women have been wet nursing each other's babies for eons…Women don't want to be feeding their babies powder infant formula, and they want help so we're working together as mothers.”
Advocates say, in some cases, babies have no time to waste. A mom who has nursing problem tells the Toronto Star, the risk is worth taking.
“It’s a risk, but I made that choice. Sometimes we (receiver and donor) just have to stick together, despite the critics or the controversy it might cause.”
Question is - could milk banks meet the demand? According to Vancouver Sun, Canada has only one milk bank and the U.S. doesn’t have many more. The Chicago Tribune says:
“Just 10 milk banks are operating in the U.S., and demand far outstrips supply. Premature infants are especially in need of donated breast milk”
The FDA plans to release documents related to breast milk donations and banking. So what do you think? Got -- breast milk? And if you don’t -- wanna share?
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