Valuing Nursing and Midwifery

Valuing Nursing and Midwifery

May 12, 2014

To highlight the immense contribution of nurses and midwives to health care, the Aga Khan University celebrated International Nurses Day and the International Day of the Midwife on Monday, May 12, 2014. This year’s themes for the two days were ‘Nurses: A force for change – a vital resource for health’ and ‘Midwives: changing the world one family at a time’.

“Many health care systems in the developing world are struggling to meet the needs for basic healthcare. Many countries, including Pakistan, will not meet key Millennium Development Goals related to maternal and child care. It requires committed and highly trained nurses and midwives to meet with this demand,” said Dr Keith Cash, Dean, School of Nursing and Midwifery while speaking at the event.

Pakistan’s progress on MDG 4: reduction of child mortality and MDG 5: improving maternal health is not up to par and it is unlikely, with only a year and half remaining before the 2015 deadline, that Pakistan will achieve these goals.

This further highlights the important role nurses and midwives - who are able to understand how psychological, social and economic factors affect health - play in providing essential health care, sometimes in extremely adverse conditions.

Midwives play a significant role in decreasing the number of child births and deaths as well as improving pre and post natal care. In developing countries such as Pakistan where people lack access to basic health care and clean drinking water, and where poverty means poor nutrition and hygiene practices, this maternal care can make a significant difference..

In acute circumstances, more trained professionals are required. AKU’s nursing school was the first to offer professional nursing training in Pakistan over 30 years ago and remains committed to quality training and care which is tailored to the developing world so that the nurses and midwives can be a potent force for change.


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