Health outcomes for women experiencing prolonged or obstructed labour will be improved following capacity building for midwifery trainers and educators.
Fourteen Midwifery Master Trainers and four Midwifery Educators from educational institutions across the country participated in a four-day workshop in Port Moresby with specialists from the Burtnett Institute.
These participants were guided through how to assess, monitor, and support women and babies when labour is not progressing normally.
In partnership with the Burnett Institute, the United Nations Population Fund in Papua New Guinea is supporting the National Department of Health to conduct Emergency Obstetric and Newborn Care (EmONC) training with midwifery professionals around the country.
The program began in 2019 and over 100 midwives have been trained.
Facilitating this training was Burnett Institute’s Midwifery Specialist Kara Blackburn and Research Midwife Boe Calvert, who introduced how to complete a rapid assessment of mothers in labour when prolonged labour is suspected, what to do during ineffective contractions and how to manage hyperstimulation especially by managing oxytocin infusion.
“I hope to see an Improvement in the initial assessment of a mother in labour by midwives to identify any complications as soon as she arrives in the health facility and maternity ward,” said Ms. Blackburn.
“Midwives in PNG are doing extremely well in really challenging circumstances. especially in the rural areas when it is identified that a woman is in prolonged obstructed labour. I really commend the midwives for doing an outstanding job.”
Obstructed or prolonged labour can be dangerous both mothers and babies. It can lead to newborn deaths and conditions like obstetric fistula.
Central to this training is participation in, and repetition of, simulations using state-of-the-art models.
By providing this training to educators, the nation’s next generation of midwives are being provided with the highest standards of preparation before joining this essential workforce.
Simulation supports the development of midwifery skills and creates a link between theory and practice.
According to Ms. Kara Blackburn simulations increase confidence and competence among midwifery students and healthcare professionals and strong evidence shows that students and healthcare professionals are able to retain the knowledge and are confident and competent in performing in a real life situation.
A senior Midwifery Lecturer from the University of Papua New Guinea , School of Health & Medical Sciences, Mrs. Lillian Temo was grateful for the enhancement of her skills in using simulators when teaching.
“I will encourage more student interactions through the case presentation of simulations which will increase their knowledge capacity as well,” said Mrs Temo.
In opening the training, UNFPA Country Representative Ms. Marielle Sander reaffirmed UNFPA’s commitment to the midwives working to serve women and babies in PNG and committed to a stronger, and more direct relationship between midwives and UNFPA.