Saturday, November 25, 2017

The Lancet inspires vital midwifery solution worldwide

  • Nurul Islam Hasib from Toronto,
    Published: 2017-06-22 22:52:00 BdST

UNFPA photo shows midwifery student Selina Akter plays the role of a mother as students practise post-natal care at the Dinajpur Nursing Institute in northern Bangladesh.

The Lancet series on midwifery published in 2014 has showed the way to how the profession can be developed in a new setting such as Bangladesh.

The impact of the series that called the midwifery a “vital solution” to the challenges of providing high-quality maternal and newborn care for all women and infants in all countries, was discussed at the ongoing triennial congress of midwifery in Toronto on Thursday.

The British medical journal in that series also provided a framework for quality maternal and newborn care that firmly places the needs of women and their newborn infants at its centres.

Kerstin Erlandsson, an associate professor at Dalarna University, Sweden, said The Lancet showed the way to all and inspired both students, midwives and teachers.

“That series was good for teaching, mentorship, supervision. It's also good for development of curriculum, syllabuses and assignments. It is a system that shows you how you could place the profession in the health system,” she said at a sideline event.

“It also helps students understand their role within the healthcare system who they are and where they are heading towards. So it actually inspires students, midwives, and teachers to move ahead and use effective policies for women and newborn so that they survive and thrive,” Erlandsson added.

The Dalarna University runs a net-based masters’ education for Bangladesh’s midwifery faculty with the support of the UNFPA. That course was also a result of the Lancet series.

It made the midwifery faculty masters students in Bangladesh understand “how sustainability and resilience, as well as cost-effectiveness in maternal and new born care can be achieved”, according to UNFPA.

“Effective and ineffective practices presented by category of practice in the Lancet’s framework for quality maternal and newborn care has been used for observation peruses in their students’ clinical placement by midwifery faculty master students in Bangladesh”.

Malin Bogren, midwifery specialist at the UNFPA Dhaka office, told “National interest in the development of a midwifery profession is high following the series of articles about midwifery published in the journal Lancet.”

She said it emerged as a tool “useful to countries such as Bangladesh who wish to take a deeper look at the status of its provision of sexual, reproductive, maternal, and neonatal health services, in comparison to global standards and criteria for high quality midwifery education and practice”.

“What’s needed now is continuous advocacy,” Bogren said.

Over 4,000 midwives, medical practitioners, obstetricians, gynaecologists, health care professionals, governments, policy makers along with UN agencies, international non-government organisations and donors from across the world convened at the ICM Congress that ended on Thursday.

Globally, it is said that midwives can take care over 80 percent of the child bearing-related maternal health including deliveries and newborn care.