The Women's and Pediatric Hospital (KKH), which in August last year broke more than 400 donors, helped to provide more than 600 vulnerable babies whose mothers can not produce enough milk for them.
The mother's milk collected by the bank – the only one in Singapore – also helped to reduce the incidence of necrotic enterocolitis, a serious intestinal disease that is the leading cause of death among premature babies.
Before the bank started, the disease had about 5.8 percent of about 200 babies. But this has fallen to the current 1.8 percent, KKH said yesterday.
Before that, these babies are fed with the dairy formula, which can cause feeding of premature and sick children to intolerance and puts them at the risk of necrotic enterocolitis.
Mother's milk contains enzymes that help digestion, nutrients, growth factors, hormones and protective antibodies. Reduces the risk of disease and promotes normal growth and development of the baby.
Last year, about 10 percent live-born, or 3,962 babies, was here too early. In KKH, the share of premature births rose from 11 percent to 13.5 percent, or about 1500 pre-generations, from 2007 to the previous year, said Dr. Chua Mei Chien, director of KKH Human Milk Bank.
The main reasons for this are the growing number of mothers in the first pregnancy and the higher the rate of pregnancy helps, she added.
Most recipients of donated male milk were premature babies from KKH, the Singapore General Hospital and the National Hospital of the University.
Other recipients include sick babies with medical conditions such as low birth weight, congenital heart disease, and conditions affecting the digestive tract.
Only babies that are Singapore or permanent residents born in three hospitals are entitled to a dairy bank. On average, each recipient received 2.9 liters of donor human milk for 13 days, Dr. Chua said.
The bank is worth $ 1.37 million funded during the three years of the philanthropic organization Temasek Foundation Cares. Strict processes are in place to ensure that human donor milk is safe for consumption.
Donors must undergo blood tests for various diseases, and donated milk is tested for bacterial contamination and pasteurized.
Milk donated within the project is free of charge because processing costs are covered by the grant of the organization.
Temasek Cares Foundation will invest more funds to extend the program beyond hospital environments, such as babies living in challenging environments or whose mothers have infectious diseases, are subjected to medical treatment or drug addiction, said its chief executive, Mrs. Woon Saet Nyoon .
Madame Aileen Gonzalez, 39, who has received and donated a mother's milk to the bank, finds it very useful to mothers like her.
Her daughters were born too early. She said that the older girl, who is now five years old, was fed with milk formula, while six months old had received milk from milk.
"Although it's from another mum, I think mother's milk still contains the best nutrients for the baby," said Mrs. Gonzalez, an analyst at the logistics operation.
Mothers who want to donate their excess milk can send an email to KFC on [email protected] They can also call 6394-1986, or visit www.kkh.com.sg/milkbank