for a healthcare practitioner
What is a human milk bank?

A human milk bank is a centre to collect, screen, test, and store donor milk collected from healthy lactating mothers.
In India, these centres are called Comprehensive Lactation Management Centres (CLMCs).
India has 57 CLMCs across different states.
To know more about CLMCs, click here.

What are the functions of a CLMC?

The primary function of a CLMC is make sure that every child receives breast milk. A CLMC performs three functions
1. It supports breastfeeding by helping new mothers breastfeed and resolve their lactation issues.
2. It helps mothers to express milk for their own babies and to donate excess milk to the CLMC.
3. It tests, stores, and pasteurizes collected milk and feeds it to vulnerable babies who do not have access to their mothers milk due to unavoidable reasons.

How does a CLMC make sure that the milk is safe to consume for babies?

Every CLMC follows a robust process to ensure that milk is treated and stored as per the Government of India guidelines (National Guidelines for Lactation Management Centres for Public Health Facilities).
Click here to know about the guidelines.

The guidelines are based on the Comprehensive Lactation Management Centre (CLMC) model which is an adaptation of PATHs Mother Baby Friendly Initiative Plus model. It is an integrated model which provides support for breastfeeding, milk expression, kangaroo mother care, and provides safe donor human milk to babies who do not have access to mother’s milk. The government envisions prioritizing access to breast milk for all infants by establishing CLMCs in tertiary care facilities, Lactation Management Units (LMUs) which provide breastfeeding, milk expression, and KMC support at district level facilities, and Lactation Support Units (LSUs) which provide counseling support to improve breastfeeding and encourage KMC at all delivery points in the country.

How do I train my staff on the processes of a CLMC?

The national guidelines mandate that all staff must be trained. Please write to rsachdeva@path.org or drsatishtiwari@gmail.com

What are the quality guidelines used to ensure safety of donor human milk?

The national guidelines recommend that all CLMCs develop a Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points plan (HACCP). PATH has developed a HACCP training toolkit. To know more, please write to rsachdeva@path.org or drsatishtiwari@gmail.com

How much space do I need to build a CLMC in my facility? What are the rooms and equipment I require.

You can refer to the “National Guidelines on Lactation Management Centres in Public Health Facilities, it provides an architectural plan as well as mandatory and desired equipment required in a CLMC.