This guideline covers how donor milk banks should recruit, screen and support women who donate breast milk. It also covers how milk banks should handle and process the breast milk they receive from donors. It aims to improve the safety of donor milk and operation of donor milk services.

Recommendations

Who is it for?

  • Healthcare professionals
  • Commissioners and providers
  • Staff involved in the collection, storage and handling of donor milk
  • Staff in community services hat support breast milk donors and mothers or carers of infants receiving donor milk
  • Women who donate breast milk or who would like to donate breast milk
  • Mothers and carers of infants who receive donor breast milk

Is this guideline up to date?

We checked this guideline in February 2014. We identified no major studies that will affect the recommendations in the next 3–5 years.

Next review: 2019

Guideline development process

How we develop NICE guidelines

This guideline was previously called donor milk banks: the operation of donor milk bank services.

Your responsibility

The recommendations in this guideline represent the view of NICE, arrived at after careful consideration of the evidence available. When exercising their judgement, professionals are expected to take this guideline fully into account, alongside the individual needs, preferences and values of their patients or service users. The application of the recommendations in this guideline is not mandatory and the guideline does not override the responsibility of healthcare professionals to make decisions appropriate to the circumstances of the individual patient, in consultation with the patient and/or their carer or guardian.

Local commissioners and/or providers have a responsibility to enable the guideline to be applied when individual health professionals and their patients or service users wish to use it. They should do so in the context of local and national priorities for funding and developing services, and in light of their duties to have due regard to the need to eliminate unlawful discrimination, to advance equality of opportunity and to reduce health inequalities. Nothing in this guideline should be interpreted in a way that would be inconsistent with compliance with those duties.

Commissioners and providers have a responsibility to promote an environmentally sustainable health and care system and should assess and reduce the environmental impact of implementing NICE recommendations wherever possible.

  • National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE)