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Dr. Natalie Shenker, BM, BCh (Oxon), PhD (Imp)

  • Speaker Type: GOLD Lactation 2019
  • Country: England

Dr Natalie Shenker is a former surgeon, scientist, and the cofounder of the Human Milk Foundation, which aims to ensure more babies are fed with human milk. As well as supporting a range of educational and research studies, the HMF aims to ensure assured access to screened donor milk through a network of human milk banks based on the cost-effective innovative model of the Hearts Milk Bank (HMB). Milk banks provide screened breastmilk to premature babies whose own mothers need time to establish breastfeeding, protecting them from a range of life-threatening complications and supporting the mother to breastfeed. The HMB has been operating in the UK for 18 months, and has supported neonatal units as well as families in the community where breastfeeding is impossible or taking time to establish.

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The Resurgence and Role of Human Milk Banking
Evolution has created human milk as a way to protect the baby postnatally, patterning the immune system and microbiome, and providing diverse developmental cues for each organ system to develop normally. Milk also provides nutrition. When screened donated human milk (DHM) is available, mothers facing the most stressful circumstances of having an ill premature baby tend to have high chances of establishing breastfeeding. If donor milk is used appropriately as a bridge to lactation, they are less likely to perceive that their bodies have failed. The work of the Hearts Milk Bank over 18 months have laid the foundation for a UK-centred drive to upscale milk bank capacity, facilitate research to determine the optimal use of donor milk, and support a shift in perception about the role of human milk, underpinned by the latest science.
Presentations: 29  |  Hours / CE Credits: 27.0  |  Viewing Time: 8 Weeks
Presentations: 1  |  Hours / CE Credits: 1  |  Viewing Time: 2 Weeks
Hours / CE Credits: 1 (details)  |  Categories: Human Milk Banks