A woman holds a styrofoam box while smiling at another woman in a lab room

Mercy Health Breastmilk Bank

The Mercy Health Foundation provides support to expand Victoria's only Breastmilk Bank. The Mercy Health Breastmilk Bank provides sick and premature babies with access to vital donated breastmilk when their own mother is having difficulty with supply.

Breastmilk helps sick and premature babies get the best possible start in life.

Pasteurised donor Breastmilk is a very precious resource. As such it is available for infants born before 32 weeks gestation or whose birthweight is below 1500 grams and receiving care in the Mercy Hospital for Women’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) AND Special Care Nursery.

Victoria’s first Breastmilk Bank was officially opened by Mercy Health on the 22nd of February 2011, following two years of extensive research and planning.

Expanding our reach to support more mothers and babies

Recently, the Bank received agreement from both the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and the Victorian Managed Insurance Authority (VMIA) to expand the Breastmilk Bank’s unique support to all Victorian hospitals with level 6 Intensive Care nurseries.

This means pasteurised donor breastmilk will be available in the near future for registered individual babies at Victorian hospitals with level 6 nurseries.

The Breastmilk Bank is seeking to further expand by inviting The Royal Women’s Hospital, Monash Medical Centre Clayton and the Royal Children’s Hospital to collaborate in establishing Breastmilk Bank satellite sites.

The expansion of Victoria’s only Breastmilk Bank—and the vital care it provides for premature babies—is dependent upon philanthropic support.

Please contact us if you can assist in our expansion by supporting this amazing program.

In the past 12 months, the Mercy Health Breastmilk Bank had:

  • 41 donor mothers enrolled including one returning donor with excess breastmilk from her 3rd child
  • 378 litres of breastmilk provided by donor mothers
  • 157 litres of breastmilk provided to babies
  • 10 recipients from other Melbourne neonatal hospitals (with approval from DHHS and VMIA received for each case) received donor breastmilk

Learn more about how the Mercy Health Breastmilk Bank provides vulnerable infants with access to safe, screened and Pasteurised Donor Milk (PDM).

Donate now to the Mercy Health Breastmilk Bank cause

Last reviewed July 9, 2018.