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Midwives play an important role in ensuring women and their babies receive high-quality care during pregnancy, childbirth and after birth

Three PNG women standing holding hands and smiling.

Pictured above: Midwifery OSF scholarship recipients, Nancy Patrick (left), Ninde Kange (centre), and Roselyn James (right) established an incinerator at Lutheran School of Nursing as part of their leadership training assignment.

Oil Search Foundation (OSF) continues to partner with Provincial Health Authorities (PHA’s) in Hela and Southern Highlands, and Lutheran School of Nursing (LSON) to support midwifery training. The midwifery training involves a 12-week practical placement where students practise their skills under qualified supervision.

In 2019, three Nursing Officers were supported to complete the midwifery course.  Ninde Kange, Nancy Patrick and Roselyn James started their 18 months Bachelor in Midwifery Studies at the LSON in January. This month, they started their 12-week practical placements at Tari and Mendi hospitals.

“Whilst working as a Nursing Officer at Pimaga Rural Hospital, I encountered many cases where pregnant mothers had complications. With my limited knowledge on how to help them, I decided to further my education in midwifery. The OSF scholarship has enabled me to achieve my dream of becoming a midwife.”
- Ninde Kange OSF scholarship recipient

Through OSF’s scholarship program, a total of five Nursing Officers have been trained in midwifery since 2018.  Two of these Nursing Officers are now the qualified midwives in two health centres in Hela province.

OSF Executive Director Stephanie Copus-Campbell says, “midwifery is critical to saving the lives of mothers and babies, and OSF is happy to contribute to strengthening their practical skills through our scholarship program.”

‘On completion of their placement, we will have contributed to the pool of competent midwives who can provide quality services.’ adds Copus-Campbell.

Southern Highlands PHA Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Dr Joseph Birisi said: “We are happy to have two students do their practical at the provincial hospital in Mendi. Their 12-week placement with us will enable them to enhance their clinical competencies while at the same time providing midwifery services to our people. We will also ensure our hospital creates a supportive clinical environment for them to learn.”

Hela PHA CEO, Dr James Kintwa shared similar sentiments: “Roselyn James, was a Nursing Officer at Hela Provincial Hospital in Tari prior to receiving the OSF Scholarship in 2019. Seeing the need to have more trained midwives at our hospital, we gave her this opportunity to advance her qualification. Her returning as a qualified midwife is an achievement for both Roselyn and the Hela PHA.”

The Scholarship Program is part of the Foundation’s commitment to developing PNG’s next generation of leaders in the health and education sectors.