A delegation of Libyan midwives and obstetricians have been in Aberdeen this month, as part of a new midwifery course.
A total of 22 lecturers have been recruited from North Africa to train and prepare for the delivery of a diploma of higher education in midwifery across Libya.
“There is an urgent need to upskill and improve the knowledge base of Libyan midwives”
Robert Gordon University was approached by Libya’s health ministry to work with the University of Tripoli to develop a course to improve the skills of its midwives.
The £315,000 contract awarded to Robert Gordon is part of the international effort to rebuild primary care services across the country, after the uprising against Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.
The course will be delivered to 250 existing nurses and midwives across the country.
The course was developed by Tracy Humphrey, professor of midwifery, and Jayne Forrest, midwifery lecturer practitioner.
Professor Humphrey said: “There has been a huge disinvestment of resources in healthcare in Libya over the last few years, which has led to significant educational and training gaps.
“There is an urgent need to upskill and improve the knowledge base of Libyan midwives,” she added.
The new course, which is 50% practice based and 50% theory based, aims to provide quality evidenced based education that will be delivered in eight educational facilities across Libya.
Professor Humphrey and Ms Forrest travelled to Libya this spring to recruit the lecturers to teach students and will visit the country every two months to oversee the delivery of the course.
Dr Najwa Eljabu, dean of the faculty of nursing and midwifery at Tripoli University, said: “Midwives in Libya have had very limited training, and their skills need to be upgraded with new qualifications. “We want to develop the provision of care in Libya to the standards set by the International Confederation of Midwives.”
Nadia Gashout, health coordinator at the Libyan ministry of health, added: “The links we have developed will be very useful for us and our fellow professionals well in to the future.”