Improving Maternal and Newborn Health

Improving Maternal and Newborn Health

One of the unfinished agendas and remaining high priority areas of the Millennium Development Goals, is improving maternal and newborn health.

The World Health Organization (WHO) SDG Goal #3, the International Day of the Midwife and WHO extending the Year of the Nurse and Midwife into 2021, are all connected. Here we highlight what this means for maternal and newborn health.

International Day of the Midwife – IDM2021

The theme for IDM 2021 is “Follow the data: Invest in Midwives”. Investing in midwives saves lives, improves health and strengthens healthcare systems. It is estimated that increased investment in midwives could save up to 4.3 million lives every year by averting 67% of maternal deaths, 64% of neonatal deaths and 65% stillbirths.

The world is facing a shortage of 900 000 midwives, according to the new report published by UNFPA, the World Health Organization (WHO), the International Confederation of Midwives (ICM), and partners. However, investment in midwives needs to include not only increasing their numbers, but also in their education, ongoing training, regulation, and working environment.

The International Confederation of Midwifery (ICM) has established international standards for midwifery education. Prior to the 2005 Bologna declaration obliging European Union (EU) countries to offer degree-level midwifery education a vocational-based education was common across much of central Europe. In many countries, the principles of the Bologna process have been realized over the last decades, although to varying degrees throughout Europe.

In the State of the World’s Midwifery (SoWMY) report, co-led by ICM, UNFPA and WHO, the latest evidence on the critical importance of investing in quality midwifery care is presented.

The report states that bold investments are needed in:

  • Health workforce planning, management and regulation in the work environment.
  • High quality education and training of midwives
  • Midwife-led improvements to sexual, reproductive, maternal, newborn and adolescent health (SRMNAH) service delivery
  • Midwifery leadership and governance

Making every second count during the Golden Minute

Globally, midwifes on maternity wards experience non-breathing newborns every day. A reduction in infant mortality can be achieved through immediate newborn assessment and resuscitation. Newborns generally require little assistance during neonatal transition, but worldwide up to 10% need immediate help with their breathing.

The Golden Minute refers to the first 60 seconds of a newborn’s life, during which the complex but natural transition from intra- to extrauterine life occurs.

Practicing resuscitation skills – Making every second count

Neonatal resuscitation is a critical skill required by midwives to ensure the immediate and long-term wellbeing of newly born infants. Growing evidence shows that simulation training is an effective learning strategy in midwifery education. Knowledge, confidence and skills have been shown to be significantly increased in those that have regular simulation training than those that have not.

Benefits of Low Dose High Frequency Training

Practice makes perfect.

Simulation training in a safe environment to practice and improve manual ventilation skills can improve confidence and competence in practice.

The flexible portable system allows you to use Monivent Neo Training when and where you want.

Read more about Monivent® Neo Training