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Rural clinical placement in Papua New Guinea
journal contributionposted on 04.11.2020, 00:00 by Bridget Ferguson
I am a Clinical Midwifery Facilitator working in the Maternal Child Health Initiative (MCHI) program in Papua New Guinea (PNG). The MCHI is working alongside PNG midwifery educators to build their capacity in teaching the midwifery program that aims to produce graduates who can work effectively across the country, providing quality care to reduce high maternal and neonatal mortality rates. The Bachelor of Midwifery program is a 12 month course after being a Registered Nurse and is taught across four universities and emphasis is on clinical competence, as such, 60% of the program is clinically based. The rationale for this, is that a PNG midwife requires a broad scope of practice including performing vacuum extraction, vaginal breech birth and vaginal multiple birth. PNG and its birthing women face many challenges as the healthcare system is lowresourced, having chronic shortages of both midwives and doctors and midwives often work alone in isolated, rural and remote areas of the country. The graduate midwives must be able to perform in high risk situations without the assistance of medical officers.