The Nursing Council of Jamaica joins the world in recognising, honouring and commemorating today (May 05, 2020) as International Day of the Midwife. Celebrated since 1991, this is a flagship event of the International Confederation of Midwives, the umbrella organisation for midwifery worldwide. This celebration comes in the midst of a global pandemic, COVID-19 which has had an almost paralyzing effect on the world. The pandemic has continued to reveal the challenges which now face us as a people and also highlight the vulnerabilities of the healthcare system. This presents an opportunity for improvement and building resilience.
The world has lost a number of midwives during this pandemic; you are therefore being encouraged to protect yourselves and your families during this crisis. Even in this current pandemic we stand resolute in achieving positive outcomes for the maternal and childhood populace.
The world is cognisant of the fact that midwives are critical in the saving of the lives of mothers and babies. Their skills have provided important care in the antenatal, intranatal and postnatal periods. Midwives are the voices for women and their families in this country and throughout the world. It would therefore be remiss for this country and any other country to take the work and the worth of midwives for granted.
The Nursing Council of Jamaica wishes to encourage all midwives at this time to embrace the standards and work ethics that underpin their profession. On this 5th Day of May, we salute your invaluable contribution to nation building; delivering and caring for not just two lives at a time, but a generation for a better tomorrow. The Council encourages midwives to stand unflinching and resolute and to continue giving respectful maternity care to the people of this country and embody the theme for 2020 Midwives with women: celebrate, demonstrate, mobilize, unite – our time is NOW!
Best wishes and Happy International Day of the Midwife!
Leila McWhinney-Dehaney, PhD, RN, RM