The Ethics of Donor Human Milk Banking


Breastfeeding Medicine Mar 2006, Vol. 1, No. 1: 3-13.


Background: This case study of donor human milk banking and the ethics that govern interested parties is the first time the ethics of donor milk banking has been explored.

Methods and Results: Two different models of ethics and their direct impact on donor milk banking are examined: biomedical ethics and public health ethics. How these models and principles affect different aspects of donor human milk banking and the parties involved in the delivery of this service are elucidated. Interactions of parties with each other and how the quality and type of interaction affects the ethical delivery of donor milk banking services are described. Crystallization is at the heart of the qualitative methodology used. Writing as a method of inquiry, an integrative research review, and personal experience are the three methods involved in the crystallization process.

Conclusion: Suggestions are made for improving access and knowledge of banked donor human milk, a valuable public health resource.

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