pairman1_RAUL ARBOLEDAAFP via Getty Images_midwifecolombia Raul Arboleda/AFP via Getty Images

Protecting Midwives and Mothers During the Pandemic

As health systems battle to contain COVID-19, care for mothers-to-be has become a low priority. To keep midwives safe and enable them to continue providing women-centered care, governments, international donor agencies, and philanthropic organizations must allocate more funding for maternal health services.

THE HAGUE/WASHINGTON, DC – As the world struggles to control COVID-19, the global health workforce is under increasing strain – and woman-centered, midwife-led care is more at risk than ever.

The current crisis is stretching health-care facilities to the limit, as shortages of both staff and resources place intense pressure on services. Harrowing accounts from midwives on the front line highlight human-rights concerns, the over-medicalization of birth, and growing distress among them and pregnant women alike. In the battle to contain COVID-19, care for mothers-to-be has become a low priority.

Midwives are vital to the health and protection of women in childbirth. In 2017, an estimated 295,000 women worldwide died from causes related to pregnancy or childbirth – the vast majority of them in low-income and lower-middle-income countries. Most of these deaths were preventable. Throughout this health emergency, we must ensure that midwife-led care is maintained as far as possible.

We hope you're enjoying Project Syndicate.

To continue reading, subscribe now.

Subscribe

or

Register for FREE to access two premium articles per month.

Register

https://prosyn.org/qCgyHEE