FAQ

Do donors have to send 100 ounces of breastmilk at a time?

There is no minimum or maximum amount you may donate at one time. Donors are asked to commit to donating 100 ounces before their baby turns one year old.

Should breastmilk be fresh or frozen when sent to the milk bank or drop off site?

The milk bank receives frozen breastmilk that has previously been stored in freezers.

How old can breastmilk be when donated?

If breastmilk is kept in a regular freezer, it can be up to 3 months old. If kept in a deep freezer, it can be up to 6 months old.

Can donors take supplements containing fenugreek to help increase their production of breastmilk?

Unfortunately, mothers are unable to donate their milk containing fenugreek.

Where is my breastmilk sent following the pasteurization process?

After the pasteurization process and lab testing, donor breastmilk is sent primarily to local Neonatal Intensive Care Units. Some out-of-state hospitals also receive donor breastmilk for their NICUs.

Are mothers compensated for donating their excess breastmilk?

Donors do not receive any payment for their donations.

Are donors able to send their breastmilk from out-of-state?

The milk bank will gladly send insulated boxes and cover all shipping expenses for donors who wish to send their milk from out-of-state.

Can donors send the milk already stored in their freezers (before lab testing or screening)?

Donors may send any frozen breastmilk (within the acceptable age range and free of restricted medications) that may be currently stored.

What kind of storage containers are recommended for donated breastmilk?

Any type of storage container donors wish to send to the milk bank is acceptable. However, the milk bank can provide storage containers so that donors do not have to purchase their own.

What is the first step to begin the donor screening process?

Simply contact the Oklahoma Mothers' Milk Bank at (405) 297-5683 for a short phone screening to test donor eligibility.

I tasted my milk after I thawed it and it tastes funny, not sweet like my fresh milk. Will you still take it for donation?

Yes. All milk that has been frozen and even some refrigerated milk does not taste the same as fresh.  Some people have described it as soapy or spoiled tasting.  Yet it is perfectly good for your baby and fine to donate.  Freezing the milk changes the lipid (fat) molecules and this makes it taste or smell different.  Babies who have had stored milk all their lives do not mind the taste but it may be a reason that a baby that has never had stored milk rejects it.

My doctor told me that the medication I was taking was OK for me to take when I was pumping my milk and breastfeeding my baby. Why can't I donate my milk if the medication is alright for my baby?

Your doctor knows about your baby's health and knows that your baby will be fine with the medication you are taking.  All medications enter the blood stream and some of it also enters the milk you are pumping.  The babies we serve are very fragile.  Some of them are preterm babies as small as 1 pound and very sick.  OMMB must be very careful and protect these little ones so we are not able to take milk during the time you are taking most medication.