Amaara- the human milk bank has opened for new mothers who are unable to breastfeed their children due to various reason in Bengaluru on Tuesday.
Amaara bank will store and supply the pasteurized donor human milk (PDHM). At the time of unavailability of mother's own milk, the banks will supply the PDHM.
The country is still fighting with the issue of low birth infants and in India has very less human milk banks.
Dr Raghuram Malliah, Director Neonatology of La Femme Delhi and Co-Founder Breast Milk Foundation said, "In 18 months we have had about 100 donor mother and 750 litres of milk processed and including government hospitals, we have touched some 500 babies.
"The team felt the response in Bengaluru will be much higher due to better awareness. Anika Parashar COO Fortis La Femme, said, "The IT city has more potential and once we start collecting proper data, the numbers might exceed the Delhi figures.
We have already started getting an overwhelming response from recipients and donors and also lactation experts and gynaecologists have already started referring the bank to the new mothers".
The bank would adhere to strict guidelines with regard to donors and recipients. They would not be selling milk to anyone who calls.
The price of each bottle will be Rs 200, but for poor below poverty lines, it will be free.
"We would only process calls coming to us from hospitals and not mothers. Also, the donors after registering with the bank have to undergo various tests before we collect the milk. The milk, which is expressed at the donor's doorstep would be then analysed and the nutrient content would be labelled on each bottle," Dr Raghuram said.
"There are no tie-ups with the government hospitals, but if we are reached out to by them we would be sending milk there as well just like in Delhi, where we donate milk to some 25 government hospitals," he added.