Area’s first breast milk bank opens in western PA

PITTSBURGH (AP) — The first donor breast milk bank in the western Pennsylvania region is opening in Pittsburgh and will be the only one supplying hospitals throughout the state.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that an open house and ribbon-cutting ceremony are scheduled Wednesday at the Three Rivers Mothers’ Milk Bank on Penn Avenue in the city’s Strip District.

The nonprofit’s mission is to provide the donated milk to the “sickest of the sick” babies kept in neonatal intensive care units in Pennsylvania and West Virginia.

Founder Denise O’Connor says the milk bank is “progressing nicely” and currently has between 80 and 100 donors.

Following expected certification this spring by the Human Milk Banking Association of North America, the facility will be among 25 active milk banks in the U.S. and Canada.