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Table 3 Stakeholder identified key practice issues for milk donation after neonatal death

From: Breast milk donation after neonatal death in Australia: a report

Theme Implications for practice
The spectrum of milk donation Accept that all women experience lactation and donation differently
The quality of donated milk Milk banks are responsible for providing safe and appropriate breast milk to recipients
Caring for the bereaved donor Accept that all women grieve differently
Ensure that bereaved mother’s welfare is a priority
Suggest broader support networks for bereaved mothers who are donors
Women’s autonomy Attend to the commonalities between bereaved mothers and non-bereaved mothers as donors when screening and assessing suitability, while accommodating the special needs associated with bereaved mothers
Avoid judgement of women’s lactation and donation decisions after infant death
Approaching bereaved mothers about donation Provide bereaved mother with the option of milk donation, when available
Spread too thin Provide donation guidelines or information on further support in cases where no HMB is available or if donation does not fit within guidelines
Four categories of milk donation after neonatal death Bereaved mothers have different patterns of milk donation. These may need to be considered with regard to individual milk banking guidelines. (i) donation of previously expressed milk/frozen stores (ii) donation as a result of sustained lactation where there is a surviving infant who is being fed by the expressed breast milk or through breastfeeding (iii) donation of breast milk that is expressed as part of lactation suppression, and (iv) donation of milk expressed during sustained lactation where there is no surviving infant