SICK babies in need of human breast milk in Dublin were given donations made 250miles away from Birmingham Women’s Hospital.
Birmingham Women’s Hospital teamed up with P&O Ferries and the Blood Bikers from the West Midlands Freewheelers and the Mersey and Cheshire Blood Bike Services to get the four litres of milk to Coombe Women’s Hospital.
The milk will be used to support mothers while they are establishing their own milk supply, or if they are unable to provide their own milk due to geographical separation, maternal illness or neonatal illness.
Marina Rudge, Birmingham Women’s Hospital milk bank practitioner, said: “We’re so proud of the national effort to transport milk across the country and beyond to support sick babies across different neonatal wards.
“Our blood bikers are so precious to us in this process of delivering milk under time pressures.
“They volunteer their time to support us – they’re able to get through traffic quickly, delivering other important medical equipment, medication and essentials to support patients and families across the country.
“Being able to deliver to Dublin to support Coombe Hospital feels brilliant – to be able to support our NHS colleagues across seas, similar to how we supported during Covid-19, just shows how collaborative we can be in working together to support premature and sick babies.”
Dave Fullwood, aged 67 from the Blood Bike team said: “All I can say is that it’s an absolute privilege to be able to do this – it really becomes a passion and a positive challenge to deliver to families in need.
“I’ve been doing this for 11 years now – I thought I’d put my motorbike qualification to use and do something meaningful and get to ride a good bike.
“It’s really great to work with the team, it’s like a big family – the Dublin delivery was like a big relay. All teams contributed and we worked so well together.”
If any mothers would like to join the group of Milk Bank Mums visit the Birmingham Women’s Hospital website for more.