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Midwives: Making a Difference

This brief outlines the role and capacity of midwives in making high-quality reproductive health care available to women. [adapted from author]

State of the World's Midwifery 2011: Delivering Health, Saving Lives

The report presents a body of knowledge to inform and accelerate the availability of quality midwifery services for women and newborns. It aims to make a valuable contribution both to strengthening the midwifery workforce around the world and to the critical planning that is needed to achieve the health Millennium Development Goals. [from summary]

Save Lives: Invest in Midwives

This brief outlines the essential role that midwives play in healthcare and the issues behind the shortage of midwives. [adapted from author]

Use of Midwives and Traditional Birth Attendants in HIV Care

The authors provide an overview of maternal health services in the context of the HIV pandemic and outline the role of health professionals in maternal health and HIV prevention, care, and treatment. Particular attention is paid to the potential role of traditional birth attendants in expanding access to quality care. [adapted from author]

Reducing the Burden of Maternal Mortality in Afghanistan: Merlin's Community Midwifery Education Programme in Takhar

The purpose of this paper is to provide an overview of an Afghanistan community midwifery program in Takhar Province, to capture key lessons learnt from the first round of training, and to draw conclusions for future initiatives. [adapted from author]

Experience of Being a Traditional Midwife: Relationships with Skilled Birth Attendants

This article focuses on an unexpected finding of a research project which explored the experience of being a traditional midwife. The study found that traditional midwives often perceive skilled (professional) birth attendants to be abusive of both them and the women who are transferred to hospital for emergency obstetric care. [from abstract]

Global Survey Monitoring Progress in Nursing and Midwifery

The objectives of this study were to establish a global baseline within five key result areas (human resources planning, management, education, practice and leadership); and evaluate the impact of country interventions to improve nursing and midwifery services considering past policy recommendations. [adapted from introduction]

Front Line Care: Report by the Prime Minister's commission on the Future of Nursing and Midwifery in England 2010

The Commission developed a value-based vision of the future that sees nurses and midwives in the mainstream of service planning, development and delivery, backed up by the necessary education, continuing professional development and supervision, and by supportive management and workplace cultures. This report endorses important existing effots, and where necessary proposes to accelerate the pace of change. It adds new thinking about how best nursing and midwifery can support service users, families and local communities. [from author]

Private Midwives Serve the Hard-to-Reach: a Promising Practice Model

Yemen presents a very challenging environment for delivering health services to rural areas, and Yemen’s conservative culture does not allow women to receive health services from men. Through a pilot program, the Extending Service Delivery assisted midwives with setting up private practices in rural communities where fixed facilities and services do not exist, or are far away. [from author]

Midwifery Tutors' Capacity and Willingness to Teach Contraception, Post-Abortion Care, and Legal Pregnancy Termination in Ghana

Gaps in the midwifery tutors’ knowledge on comprehensive abortion care (CAC) have resulted in most midwives in Ghana not knowing the legal indications under which safe abortion care can be provided, and lacking the skills and competencies for CAC services. The aim of this study is to assess the capacity and willingness of midwifery tutors to teach contraception, post abortion care and legal termination in Ghana. [from abstract]

Role of Nurses and Midwives in Polio Eradication and Measles Control Activities: a Survey in Suday and Zambia

We conducted a survey among nurses and midwives working at district level in Sudan and Zambia to determine their roles and functions in polio eradication and measles elimination programs. [from abstract]

Community-Based Skilled Birth Attendants in Bangladesh: Attending Deliveries at Home

A program to create a cadre of skilled birth attendants for home births was launched by the Government of Bangladesh Bangladesh in 2004. This article suggests that the task-shifting program can only serve as an interim measure rather than a long-term solution as more women decide to seek institutional delivery and professional midwifery care. [adapted from abstract]

Health Service Planning and Policy-Making: a Toolkit for Nurses and Midwives

The purpose of this toolkit, consisting of 7 booklets, is to provide nurses and midwives with tools to effectively participate in and influence health care planning and policy-making. This tool-kit has been designed for use by any nurse or midwife who has an interest in advocating for change in their work environment. [from publisher]

WHO Guidelines for Implementing Strategic Directions for Strengthening Nursing and Midwifery Services in the African Region 2007-2017

The regional guidelines for implementing the SDNM in the African Region are to accelerate action at country level. The guidelines also provide both a framework for WHO action to support countries in improving the quality of nursing and midwifery services, and a guide for action at national and local levels. Possible priority actions have been proposed to countries to facilitate strengthening of nursing and midwifery services at national and local levels. [from foreword]

Helping Cambodians Plan Their Families

This video resource shows how midwives and community volunteers are helping more Cambodian women to increase the time between births, thereby contributing to healthier pregnancies, infants and families as well as to a better chance of escaping poverty. [adapted from synopsis]

Strengthening Nursing and Midwifery Services in National Health Systems

This report discusses ways and means of improving the capacities of nurses and midwives and building consensus on a regional agenda to strengthen the contribution of nursing and midwifery services to rapidly scale up health services delivery and health outcomes in the African region. [adapted from introduction]

Modern Supervision in Action: a Practical Guide for Midwives

The aims of this publication are to encourage midwives and student midwives to make the most of supervision by working in partnership with their supervisor; provide clear information about the supervisory process and the interface between supervision and midwifery practice; and inform midwives and student midwives about the changing role of the supervisor of midwives. [from introduction]

Taking Critical Services to the Home: Scaling-Up Home-based Maternal and Postnatal Care, Including Family Planning, through Community Midwifery in Kenya

Increasing access to safe delivery and family planning services within rural communities increases the opportunities for women to have positive outcomes for their pregnancies as well as to plan and achieve their desired family size. This paper examines the scaling up of a community-based model in Kenya that enabled women to give birth safely at home or to be referred to a hospital when attended by a self-employed skilled midwife living in the community. [adapted from summary]

Restructuring the Additional Duty Hours Allowance: Job Descriptions for Clinical, Nursing & Midwifery and Pharmacy Staff

This document details the specific hiring criteria for clinical, nursing & midwifery and pharmacy staff as established by the Health Services division of the Ghana Ministry of Health.

Level and Determinants of Incentives for Village Midwives in Indonesia

Since the early 1990s Indonesia has attempted to increase the level of skilled attendance at birth by placing rural midwives in every village in an effort to reduce persistently high levels of maternal mortality. Yet evidence suggests that there remains insufficient incentive to ensure an equal distribution across areas while the poor in all areas continue to access skilled attendance much less than those in richer groups.

Maternal Mortality Update 2006 - Expectation and Delivery: Investing in Midwives and Others with Midwifery Skills

This document reviews the issues around midwives and others with midwifery skills: who they are, what they do and how to scale up professional attendance at all births. It also includes case studies of midwifery initiatives. [adapted from summary]

Midwifery in the Community: Lessons Learned

This report documents experiences and lessons from the First International Forum on Midwifery in the Community related to training and scaling-up the midwifery workforce.

Towards MDG5: Scaling up the Capacity of Midwives to Reduce Maternal Mortality and Morbidity

Urgent support to increase the numbers and skills of midwives would save the lives of 5 million women, prevent 80 million illnesses and disabilities from pregnancy or childbirth and save the lives of countless newborns. The goal of this workshop is to contribute to that agenda, and respond to the global focus on human resources for health. [from executive summary]

Investing in Midwives and Others with Midwifery Skills to Save the Lives of Mothers and Newborns and Improve Their Health

This guidance note is designed for countries seeking to scale up midwifery services, especially at the community level. It outlines in detail the action required by policy-makers and program managers to effect change at country level and scale up midwifery capacity, specifically in poor and hard-to-reach areas.

Achieving Millennium Development Goal 5: Is India Serious?

This article suggests that India’s maternal mortality rate is so high due to political, administrative and managerial issues such as the lack of exclusive midwifery training and professional midwives. [adapted from author]

Skilled Delivery Care in Indonesia

Care for most women before, during and after delivery can be provided within a well equipped primary care setting. Since the 1980s Indonesia has attempted to improve women’s access to maternal health care by assigning professional midwives to each village. Despite an increase in the number of midwives, maternal mortality remains high compared to other countries with similar Gross Domestic Product per capita. [from introduction]

Filipino Midwives Reaching out to the Communities

This presentation discusses the roles and challenges of private sector midwives and how they can benefit community health care.

Global Standards for the Initial Education of Professional Nurses and Midwives

Initial nursing or midwifery education prepares professionals for the workforce thus there is a need for programmes to be of a high quality. The development of global standards for initial nursing and midwifery education identifies the essential, critical components of education. [from author]

Village-Based Midwife Programme in Indonesia

The government of Indonesia launched the village-based midwife program to place a skilled birth attendant in every village to provide antenatal and perinatal care, family planning, other reproductive health services, and nutrition counseling. The attendants were also to facilitate basic primary health-care services, including immunization and nutrition interventions.

Description of the Private Nurse Midwives Networks (Clusters) in Kenya: a Best Practice Model

During the 1990s in Kenya, nurse midwives, a new group of private-sector service providers, were licensed to operate private clinics close to communities. The private nurse midwives operate private clinics, nursing and maternity homes primarily in densely populated peri-urban areas, rural trading centers and towns. The networks described in this report emerged out of the need for a sustainable supervision system and a continuing education program for the private nurse midwives. [from introduction]