International Midwives Day

Every year on an international level, International Midwives Day is observed to remember and raise awareness about the contributions of midwives to patients all over the world. Since 1992, the International Confederation of Midwives (ICM) has recognized the work of midwives on May 5th. Every year, the ICM selects a theme to encourage its member organizations, partners, and supporters to raise awareness about midwives and the critical care they give to mothers, newborns, and their families. The idea for a day to celebrate and remember midwives emerged from a conference organized by the International Confederation of Midwives in the Netherlands in 1987. The day was established to be celebrated on annual basis to fulfill the demand of following the theme “The World Needs Midwives Now More Than Ever”.  Midwives are women with hands-on experience assisting pregnant women during childbirth. When there were no clinics or suitable healthcare facilities for pregnant mothers, midwives assisted them in giving birth to their children at home. Women’s and newborns’ health and safety are dependent on midwives. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the full package of midwifery services will prevent 83 percent of all maternal deaths, stillbirths, and infant deaths. Also, today, when women chose to give birth at home, which is a less common but still common practice, these midwives play an important role in ensuring that the delivery goes smoothly. Every year, the ICM creates a new campaign theme to honor these courageous women and raise awareness about their status and the critical role they play in the lives of new mothers and infants. Midwives from local health centers, Midwives Associations, and advocates of midwifery around the world commemorate this day by organizing their own special events. Performances, singing contests, karaoke, marches, runs, street parades, public place rallies, organizing stalls in the common market, information and advice events, meetings, seminars, conferences, news, and many other activities organized by the government, NGOs, and other non-governmental organizations are just a few of the activities planned to commemorate this occasion.

During the celebration, a variety of activities are planned to support “Safe Motherhood” as well as encourage the midwifery profession around the world by raising awareness about their contributions. It’s not just about midwives becoming protectors on International Midwives Day. It’s also an opportunity to emphasize a midwife’s right to practice in a healthy and supportive setting. According to estimates, approximately 350 000 women die each year as a result of pregnancy-related complications or during childbirth, approximately 2 million newborn babies die shortly after birth or within 24 hours of birth, and approximately 2.6 million of these cases are stillbirths. Such death rates can be lessened and prevented by adding some precautions and safety measures to pregnant women and newborn babies. International Midwives Day is observed every year to raise awareness about midwives’ positions and to meet the growing demand for more midwives around the world. The Australian delegation proposed the International Day of the Midwife as a day to honor and remember midwives at the 1987 International Congress of Midwives in the Netherlands, which was debated by international midwifery associations. It took some time for the project to make its way through the UN system, but it was finally introduced in 1992. The goal of the day is to raise awareness about the critical role that midwives play in reducing maternal and neonatal mortality and morbidity, as their contribution to healthcare is often overlooked. It also seeks to recognize midwives’ contributions to improving reproductive, sexual, newborn, and maternal health outcomes. It also hopes to persuade lawmakers to help the profession by advocating for more money for midwives. The global initiative to introduce a well-educated and harmonious midwifery workforce in all working health systems by supplying adequate equipment and other supplies has begun, with the goal of preventing up to 60% of maternal and child deaths worldwide. International Midwives Day is observed to ensure universal coverage of maternity care by meeting the projected global demand for midwives. Covid-19 is putting a strain on health-care systems all over the world. Evidence suggests that de-prioritizing maternal health care during past disease outbreaks resulted in an increase in maternal and newborn deaths, as well as an increase in stillbirths. Services and attention to maternal and infant care are being diverted to help the Covid-19 response, as they have been in previous health crises. Midwife associations from around the world are reporting “harrowing” problems faced by frontline midwives, such as increased harassment, brutality, gender inequality, misinformation, and fear spreading, human rights violations, and over-medicalization of births. Midwives must be safeguarded in order to provide vital maternal health care while still protecting their own health. Midwifery services are promoted during the day’s celebration by improving quality preparation, introducing new technology, and creating the necessary atmosphere for midwives to play vital roles in their communities, societies, and thus in developing countries. ICM seeks to provide a safe atmosphere for every childbearing woman by making midwifery care available to both the mother and her newborn baby. It contributes to the global strengthening of midwifery by providing professionally trained and professional midwives to provide high-quality, evidence-based health services to mothers and babies.