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Don advises nurses, midwives to be compassionate to patients

A lecturer of Nursing Science, University of Calabar, Prof. Mildred John, has advised nurses and midwives to be compassionate to their clients toward reducing Nigeria’s infant and maternal mortality indices.

She gave the advice in Abuja while presenting a paper titled: ‘Nurses: a voice to lead; health for all’ at a conference organised by the National Association of Nurses and Midwives, on Wednesday.

The conference is part of the activities to commemorate the Nurses and Midwives week, which kicked-off on May 6  and would end on May 10.

According to her, the nurses can become a voice to lead through advocacy to the policy makers and medical outreach programmes to the under-privileged and hard-to-reach communities.

She also noted that the attitude of nurses and midwives to patients and their clients mattered a lot, saying: ‘‘we need to make sure we are welcoming our clients.’’

The don lamented that facilities were being opened, but people were not coming as expected due to the poor attitude of some nurses and other health workers.

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She, therefore, urged nurses and midwives to be at the facilities at all times to receive their clients, to enhance safe delivery toward improving the well-being of mother and child.

‘‘If the health facilities are not accommodating for the women, meet them at their homes and offer home care; you don’t insist a woman in labour should come over to health facility for delivery.

‘‘The essence is to ensure that the mother and baby remain alive and let her deliver by a skilled health personnel who would provide high quality safe care.

‘‘Once we are able to meet up with this, the indices of infant and maternal mortality in Nigeria will improve,’’ she said.

In his remarks, Dr Eugene Kongnyuy, Acting Country Representative of the United Nations Population Fund, (UNFPA), said the Agency is a Reproductive Health and Rights Agency of the UN.

According to him, UNFPA works with the Federal Government to ensure a world where every pregnancy is wanted, every child birth is safe and every child young person’s potential is fulfilled.

He said midwives and nurses are central to achieving the transformative goals of UNFPA, which are ending unmet needs for family planning, ending preventable maternal deaths and ending Gender-Based Violence and Harmful Practices by 2030.

‘‘UNFPA, World Health Organisation, UNICEF and the International Confederation of Midwives will soon launch a new report on Strengthening Quality Midwifery Education for Universal Health Coverage 2030.

‘‘The report provides compelling evidence that with investments in training, support and integration, midwifery can ensure the best health outcomes for women and their new-born children,’’ he said.

Kongnyuy, therefore, urged government all levels, partners and citizens to join UNFPA in supporting midwives and nurses to improve their professional duties.

‘‘Let us show our utmost appreciation for the tireless work they do by helping them ensure reproductive rights and choices, and safeguard the health and well-being of women and babies worldwide,’’ he said. (NAN)