For neonatal or low birthweight babies, human milk provides an ideal combination of nutrients, as well as important antibodies.
Human breast milk is the best way to protect an infant’s gut and to protect them from issues like necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC) - the most common serious gastrointestinal disorder affecting premature or very low birth weight infants.
Neonates under 32 weeks are not able to suck on the nipple until 34 weeks but they can be tube fed, and pumping is used as bridge before mom’s can feed the baby. However, not all moms who give birth to premature babies can produce enough breast milk to feed their infants.
The option to offer donor milk is the best standard of care for pre-term, vulnerable, babies leading Kristin Thayer, our Lactation Program Coordinator, to spearhead a donor breastmilk program for Stony Brook Children’s Hospital NICU babies. Specially trained NPL milk techs inventory our donor milk and manage our specially created milk room. Stony Brook’s breastmilk program works with New York Milk Bank.
In order to have available breast milk, the program relies on generous and highly motivated new mom’s, who are prepared to pump their extra milk and donate to the program.
Several of our Stony Brook colleagues have be shared their milk for preemie mom’s and their babies. L&D CNS Emily Craig is shown with son Cole and her extraordinary donation to the NY Milk Bank. Kristin St.Germaine’s baby Eric was born with a heart condition and spent time in the NICU. Eric is now thriving and Kristin is producing so much breastmilk that she has enough to donate and share with other mom's.
Division of Neonatology/Department of Pediatrics
Health Science Tower 11th Floor, Room 060
Stony Brook Children's Hospital
Stony Brook, NY 11794
Phone: (631) 444-7653
Fax: (631) 444-8968