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LRGHealthcare Announces Grand Opening December 5 of the State’s First Donor Milk Dispensary

LACONIA, NH – LRGHealthcare announces the grand opening of New Hampshire’s first donor milk dispensary, in partnership with Mothers’ Milk Bank Northeast.  All are invited to attend the Belmont Medical Center Open House and Ribbon Cutting Ceremony as LRGHealthcare celebrates the grand openings of Belmont Medical Center and its new donor milk dispensary. 
The grand opening will take place Wednesday, December 5, 4pm – 6pm at Belmont Medical Center (formerly Summit Health), 8 Corporate Drive in Belmont.  The celebration will include a ribbon cutting, refreshments and information on receiving and donating milk as well as other LRGHealthcare programs. Belmont Medical Center is the home of LRGHealthcare’s Caring for Kids pediatrics practice, Belmont Family Health and soon, the LRGHealthcare Mothers’ Milk Dispensary. 
A donor milk dispensary is a community location where a family whose baby has a prescription for donor milk can fill the prescription and take home the milk. Currently, babies in 11 New Hampshire hospitals can receive donor milk while hospitalized. However, once a baby leaves the hospital, if the baby still needs milk, the family must order the milk to be shipped from Mothers’ Milk Bank Northeast in Newton, MA. 
The milk bank collects milk from mothers who have more milk than their babies need; screens, pasteurizes, and tests the milk; then dispenses it to babies whose mothers do not have enough milk for them.
Mothers’ Milk Bank Northeast has five milk depots (drop-off sites) in New Hampshire, but this is the organization’s first milk dispensary in the state. “A donor milk dispensary is a forward-thinking and innovative way to foster health and ensure that as many babies as possible have access to human milk,” commented Ann Marie Lindquist, Director of Community Relations for Mothers’ Milk Bank Northeast. “We are thrilled to partner with LRGHealthcare on this unique community resource.”
Milk donor screening, modeled after blood donor screening, includes health history, physician approval, and a blood test. These are some of the many measures taken to ensure the safety of milk for the newborn babies served by Mothers’ Milk Bank Northeast. Milk from mothers who pass the screening is also pasteurized and tested by an independent lab to ensure safety before being dispensed to hospitals or families.
Donor milk is rapidly becoming the standard supplement to mothers' milk for preterm infants in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs). In addition, an increasing number of community hospitals with regular and special care nurseries use donor milk when babies need a supplement to their mothers’ own milk. By opening a donor milk dispensary, LRGHealthcare is on the leading edge of organizations providing access to donor milk in the community outside of the hospital setting.
“We are proud to partner with Mothers' Milk Bank Northeast to be able to provide this unique service for parents and newborns,” states Susan Coulter, MD, Medical Director for Caring for Kids. “Breast milk is the optimal nutrition for infants, and donor milk can provide a bridge to successful breast feeding when a new mother may be facing challenges in establishing her own milk supply. We are excited to be offering this valuable service to help support the best nutrition for babies, and peace of mind for parents.”
Mothers’ Milk Bank Northeast is a nonprofit community milk bank accredited by the Human Milk Banking Association of North America (HMBANA). The milk bank has been screening donors, pasteurizing milk, and dispensing to over 85 hospitals and to families throughout the Northeastern United States since 2011.
Families and healthcare providers seeking more information on receiving or donating milk can check the milk bank’s website at  For dispensary hours and procedures, contact Caring for Kids at 603.528.0995.
LRGHealthcare is a not-for-profit healthcare charitable trust representing Lakes Region General Hospital, Franklin Regional Hospital, and affiliated medical providers. LRGHealthcare’s mission is to provide quality, compassionate care and to strengthen the well-being of our community.
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