MCHENRY, Ill., Dec. 19, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Medela announced today the winning neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) from its Virtual Human Milk (breastmilk) Collection Campaign in honor of prematurity awareness and the 500,000 families impacted by premature births each year. In support of the March of Dimes' National Prematurity Awareness Month, several thousand participants across the U.S. voted for their preferred NICU to win Medela products for their facility.
Each of the six following award recipients will receive $5,000 in neonatal human milk support products from Medela, including Symphony® Preemie+™ program cards, Symphony breastpumps, Waterless Milk Warmers™, Transport/Discharge Bags and/or BabyWeigh II™ scales:
- New Hanover Regional Medical Center in Wilmington, N.C.
- Children's Hospital of Wisconsin in Milwaukee, Wis.
- Saint Vincent Health Center in Erie, Pa.
- Baptist Medical Center East in Montgomery, Ala.
- Altru Health Center in Grand Forks, N.D.
- Dallas Methodist Medical Center in Dallas, Texas
"Our goals for this campaign are to help raise awareness of the importance of human milk and support mothers and healthcare professionals to successfully provide breastmilk to babies in the NICU who need it most," said Carolin Archibald, president of Medela. "The value of breastmilk is immeasurable for the health benefits it provides infants in the NICU. Breastmilk is nature's medicine, protecting premature babies from serious complications and infections during and after their hospital stay."
A full-term pregnancy is 40 weeks. In the U.S., more than half a million babies are born premature, prior to 37 weeks of gestation. Premature birth is a serious health issue in the U.S. and for impacted families. Premature babies have a higher risk for health complications, and most require care in a NICU. NICUs play a vital role in the survival and care of premature babies as they have specialized medical expertise and equipment to handle the multiple complications faced by premature infants and their families. Medela's donations will help to provide NICU products to support premature babies and breastfeeding.
Research shows that infants who receive more breastmilk feedings have better health outcomes. Feeding human milk rather than formula in the NICU has shown to reduce the length of hospital stay, days of oxygen therapy needed, and the incidence of late onset sepsis, necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC), ear infections, serious respiratory tract infections and gastroenteritis.
For more information about the campaign, please visit www.medelapreemieawareness.com.
Medela provides the most technologically advanced breastpumps and breastfeeding accessories to nursing mothers around the world. A long-time champion of breastfeeding, Medela is the only company to develop products based on research by the world's leading lactation experts. As a result, Medela's breastpumps are the number one choice of healthcare professionals and facilities worldwide.
Medela has developed an extensive line of products to meet the diverse needs of nursing mothers. These products include hospital-grade, double and single electric and manual personal breastpumps; breastfeeding accessories such as breast care products and specialty feeding devices. Most recently, Medela introduced 2-Phase Expression®, the only research-based breastpump technology that mimics a baby's nursing rhythm, resulting in faster let-down and milk flow.
Founded in 1961 by Olle Larsson in Zug, Switzerland, Medela continues to grow under the ownership of the Larsson family. Medela serves customers through a worldwide network of distribution partners in more than 90 countries and its 15 subsidiaries in Australia, the Benelux countries, Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia, the United Kingdom, the United States, Spain, Sweden, Poland and Switzerland. www.medela.com