Founded by Toyin Saraki, the International Confederation of Midwives (ICM) Global Goodwill Ambassador, the WBFA will work with Johnson & Johnson and LSTM on delivering a ‘skills and drills’ training package for Emergency Obstetric Care and early Newborn Care in Kwara State, Nigeria.
LSTM’s Centre for Maternal and Newborn Health (CMNH) has designed an innovative programme that has the potential to reduce maternal mortality (direct obstetric fatalities) by 15% and stillbirth rates by 20%. This will be done by ensuring the improved quality and availability of skilled birth attendants (SBA), emergency obstetric care and early newborn care (EmONC), and a measurable increase in knowledge and skills of health care providers.
Midwives are at the heart of the project, as the training programme includes support to pre-service midwifery institutions to improve the competency based EmONC training components of their curriculum. The programme also includes in-service training for 80-100% of midwives, doctors and community health extension workers who provide maternity services in public sector hospitals, setting up skills labs in three general hospitals, and upgrading the capacity of one skills lab in a pre-service midwifery institute. It is a great example of a local NGO working with international partners ahead of the finalisation of the Sustainable Development Goals to establish a health programme that is truly adapted to suit the local context, and which celebrates the impact that skilled midwives can have on the survival of mothers and babies.