The International Confederation of Midwives is today celebrating the annual International Day of the Midwife.
The first international day for midwives was launched in 1991. This year’s theme is ‘The World Needs Midwives Now More Than Ever’ and the ICM along with affiliated organisations including the Royal College of Midwives is aiming to ‘express worldwide solidarity and take action to highlight the knowledge and skills of midwives, and the contribution midwives make to the health of their nations.’
Today medical aid agency, Merlin, has also launched a report ‘All Mothers Matter’ a report outlining why, without urgent investment in midwives in developing countries, the Millennium Development Goal for maternal health-to reduce the maternal mortality ratio by 75% and increase the proportion of births attended by a skilled professional by 2015-will not be reached.
There are around 600,000 maternal deaths each year from complications in pregnancy and the RCM says that 80%of these deaths would have been avoidable if the mothers had had access to skilled midwifery care.