The founder of Milk Booster Breastfeeding Company, Dr. Chinenye Obinwanne -Ezewike, has said a lot of premature babies die due to a lack of breast milk to sustain them.
Speaking at the unveiling of MilkBank Nigeria in Lagos, Obinwanne –Ezewike said it was for this reason she decided to invest in donor breast milk, adding that mother’s within her community constantly sought breast milk for premature babies.
She also called for government’s support in the area of providing funds to help those with low income in rural areas, saying that donor breast milk was the second best nutrient for a child before baby formula.
‘‘We want the government to also support this initiative by providing funds to help those with low income and rural areas. If we get that support, it will reduce the neonatal mortality rate in Nigeria. Nigeria has the third highest premature baby rate in the whole world and with this, a lot of our babies die because there is no breast milk to sustain them.’’
Obinwanne -Ezewike explained that every mother donating breast milk would be a volunteer similar to what was obtainable in blood banks.
She stressed that the volunteer mothers would be screened for communicable diseases, while the breast milk would be processed and pasteurised, and tested again.
According to her, the donor mothers will be screened for communicable diseases like HIV, Hepatitis B and C, Syphilis, and HTLV.
“It will cost over N20,000 to screen one mum and this cost will be covered by us,” she added.