Deportes

Expert: More midwives needed to reduce mortality

Thomas-El­bourne said all new moth­ers must seek an­te­na­tal care from 12 weeks of preg­nan­cy, take an­te­na­tal iron and folic acid, eat health­ily and drink lots of wa­ter whilst get­ting ad­e­quate rest.”

Say­ing some­times mid­wives are not giv­en their due re­spect, Thomas-El­bourne said, “I would like to see more re­spect for mid­wives and the roles they per­form. Mid­wives have skills and com­pe­ten­cies to man­age clients with nor­mal preg­nan­cies in line with the rec­om­men­da­tions from the In­ter­na­tion­al Con­fed­er­a­tion of Mid­wives.”

She not­ed that “Ide­al­ly it should be one mid­wife to one client.”

Giv­ing praise to T&T’s pub­lic health in­sti­tu­tions, Thomas-El­bourne said all of the pub­lic health in­sti­tu­tions had per­son­nel ded­i­cat­ed to car­ing for moth­er and ba­by

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Even though ma­ter­nal and neona­tal deaths in T&T are on the de­cline, calls are be­ing made for more mid­wives to be hired.

In an in­ter­view with Guardian Me­dia, pub­lic re­la­tions of­fi­cer of the T&T Mid­wives As­so­ci­a­tion (TTAM), Kathy Thomas- El­bourne said one of the main chal­lenges in the pub­lic health sys­tem was the short­age of mid­wives.

“Mid­wives can help to sub­stan­tial­ly re­duce ma­ter­nal and neona­tal mor­tal­i­ty due to their ex­pert train­ing,” she said.

Giv­ing a break­down of sta­tis­tics, Thomas-El­bourne said, “The ma­ter­nal mor­tal­i­ty rate in 2020 was 21.129 deaths per 1000 live births which rep­re­sent­ed a 1.98 per cent de­cline from 2019.”

She added, “The in­fant mor­tal­i­ty rate in 2019 was 21.555 deaths per 1000 live births, a 1.94 per cent de­cline from 2018.”

She not­ed that there were many mis­con­cep­tions about labour.

“Some of these are that the woman has to eat for two or that eat­ing Milk of Mag­ne­sia will give the ba­by light skin and eat­ing ochroes will al­low the bay to slip out the birth canal with­out pain,” she added.

Thomas-El­bourne said all new moth­ers must seek an­te­na­tal care from 12 weeks of preg­nan­cy, take an­te­na­tal iron and folic acid, eat health­ily and drink lots of wa­ter whilst get­ting ad­e­quate rest.”

Say­ing some­times mid­wives are not giv­en their due re­spect, Thomas-El­bourne said, “I would like to see more re­spect for mid­wives and the roles they per­form. Mid­wives have skills and com­pe­ten­cies to man­age clients with nor­mal preg­nan­cies in line with the rec­om­men­da­tions from the In­ter­na­tion­al Con­fed­er­a­tion of Mid­wives.”

She not­ed that “Ide­al­ly it should be one mid­wife to one client.”

Giv­ing praise to T&T’s pub­lic health in­sti­tu­tions, Thomas-El­bourne said all of the pub­lic health in­sti­tu­tions had per­son­nel ded­i­cat­ed to car­ing for moth­er and ba­by.

She said, “Child­birth class­es are con­duct­ed by T&T As­so­ci­a­tion of Mid­wives (TTAM) every Sat­ur­day from 10 am to 12 noon vir­tu­al­ly via the zoom plat­form since the COVID-19 pan­dem­ic.

Pre­vi­ous­ly they were held face- to- face at our build­ing the Venus Mark Learn­ing Re­source Cen­tre. Our class­es are de­liv­ered in eight-week cy­cles cov­er­ing top­ics such as Pre­na­tal & Post­na­tal ex­er­cis­es, ba­by layette and bathing of ba­by, labour and de­liv­ery, the role of the sup­port per­son, breast­feed­ing, post­na­tal care and ba­by mas­sage.”

Thomas-El­bourne said TTAM has 275 mem­bers who work in pub­lic, pri­vate and in­de­pen­dent prac­tice through­out T&T.

“Our vi­sion is to be a pre­mier or­ga­ni­za­tion em­pow­er­ing and rep­re­sent­ing mid­wives, strength­en­ing fam­i­lies and build­ing com­mu­ni­ties,” she added.

She not­ed that 95 per cent of all births in T&T are done at pub­lic in­sti­tu­tions by mid­wives.

“The per­cent­age of women who have a nat­ur­al birth is 95 per cent. The birth rate for T&T in 2020 was 12.453 births per 1000 peo­ple, a 2.54 per cent de­cline from 2019,” she added.

De­spite the fun­da­men­tal role they play in de­liv­ery, Thomas-El­bourne said mid­wives do not give epidu­rals nor per­form cae­sar­i­an sec­tions.

” Mid­wives are trained to iden­ti­fy com­pli­ca­tions and alert the ob­ste­tri­cian. Mid­wives can re­fer clients to ob­ste­tri­cians if we an­tic­i­pate prob­lems. Our role in­cludes ex­am­in­ing and mon­i­tor­ing preg­nant women, as­sess­ing care re­quire­ments and writ­ing care plans, un­der­tak­ing an­te­na­tal care in hos­pi­tals, homes and GP prac­tices, car­ry­ing out screen­ing tests, pro­vid­ing in­for­ma­tion, emo­tion­al sup­port and re­as­sur­ance to women and their part­ners,” Thomas-El­bourne said.