NEWS

A new report is heard on the shortage of midwives around the world – KBC

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Millions of lives of women and infants are lost, and millions more suffer from poor health or injury, because the needs of pregnant women and the skills of midwives are not recognized or given priority.

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The world is currently facing a shortage of 900,000 midwives, representing one-third of the world’s most demanding midwives.

The COVID-19 crisis has only exacerbated these problems and the health needs of women and infants are covered, midwifery services are being disrupted and midwives are being referred to other health services.

These are some of the key steps to take from the 2021 World Midwifery Report (UNFPA) (WHO, World Health Organization), International Midwives Association (ICM) ) and partners, who evaluate the midwifery workforce and related health resources in 194 countries.

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The severe shortage of midwives is forcing a large number of preventable deaths.

A study by this report, published in The Lancet last December, showed that fully enabling midwifery services provided by 2035 could prevent 67% of maternal deaths, 64 percent of infant deaths and 65% of stillbirths.

It can save an average of 4.3 million lives a year.

Despite the alarms presented in the final State of Midwives Report in 2014, which also provided a roadmap on how to address these shortcomings, progress over the past eight years has been very slow.

Analysis in this year’s report shows that, at current levels of development, the situation will be slightly improved by 2030.

Responding to the launch of the 2021 World Midwifery Report, Helen Clark, PMNCH Chair and former New Zealand prime minister, said:

“The need to adequately fund the employment and training of midwives, and to provide them with a decent wage and safe working environment, is essential for the health of women and infants, and for building strong health systems for all.”

“While the world is looking to rebuild due to the tragic COVID-19 disaster, it is through the strength of strong partnerships between government, health professionals, NGOs, the private sector, donors, and other stakeholders that we will ensure that critical care is given recognition and resources. in the PMNCH call for Action on COVID-19, ”he added.

Gender inequality is the undiagnosed driver in this acute shortage.

Continued shortage of midwifery labor is a sign of health systems not prioritizing the sexual and reproductive health needs of women and girls, and not recognizing the role of midwives – most of whom are women – in meeting these needs.

Women make up 93 percent of midwives and 89 percent of nurses.

Midwives not only attend births, they also provide antenatal and postnatal care and a variety of reproductive and reproductive health services, including contraception, detection and treatment of sexually transmitted diseases, and reproductive and sexual health services for young people, at all times they ensure the observance of dignity and upholding women’s rights.

As the number of midwives increases, and they are able to provide services in an enabling environment, the health of women and infants improves overall, benefiting the entire community.

In order for midwives to reach their lifesaving and transformative lives, greater investment is needed in their education and training, midwifery-led care delivery, and midwifery leadership.

Governments must prioritize funding and support for midwives and take concrete steps to include midwives in determining health policies.

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