The Mothers’ Milk Bank of the Western Great Lakes and it’s partner bank, Indiana Mothers’ Milk Bank ensure the safety of its pasteurized human donor milk (PDHM) by following screening, processing, and dispensing guidelines established by the Human Milk Banking Association of North America (HMBANA).

Mothers with extra milk and a desire to donate provide health and lifestyle histories, and undergo blood tests, similar to the screening process used at blood banks. Mothers are blood tested for HIV 1 & 2, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, HTLV 1 & 2, and Syphilis. Mothers also need to obtain medical clearance from their physician.

Donated milk is pasteurized, which destroys many bacteria and viruses, including HIV and CMV.5 Before the pasteurized milk is dispensed, bacteriological testing is done to ensure its safety. There has never been a reported case of HIV transmission with the use of PDHM in the United States.5