NATION

Health Ministry Re-engages Midwives At Makoi Maternity Unit

‘These are midwives who are expected to run the wards and man the facilities as we really need their skills and expertise’ Twenty-seven midwives will be engaged at the Makoi
23 Feb 2018 11:00
Health Ministry Re-engages Midwives At Makoi Maternity Unit
Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama while visiting Makoi Maternity Unit on February 22, 2018. Photo: Ronald Kumar

‘These are midwives who are expected to run the wards and man the facilities as we really need their skills and expertise’

Twenty-seven midwives will be engaged at the Makoi Maternity Unit in Nasinu in the near future.

This was revealed by the Minister for Health Rosy Akbar during the Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama’s visit to the maternity unit yesterday.

Expected to be the first low risk maternity unit in the country, Ms Akbar said most of the midwives would be re-engaged to the service as they had already retired.

“These are midwives who are expected to run the wards and man the facilities and we really need their skills and expertise,” Ms Akbar said.

“Initially the midwives will start with a yearly contract and the ministry will review their performance.

“I am sure we will need them for many years to come and I’m glad we are re-engaging them because we really need their skills and expertise.

“Obviously they will be providing guidance and mentorship to our nurses as well.”

She added that the re-engagement was for the Makoi facility alone, and not an open reengagement process.

However, the Fiji Midwifery Society president Aliote Galuvakadua asked the Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama for the reengagement of all the midwives who had retired and to reconsider their retirement age of 55.

Ms Galuvakadua said most of the retired midwives are currently engaged in Pacific Island countries such as Nauru and Vanuatu.

Mr Bainimarama questioned the reason for midwives movement to the other Pacific Islands and he was told that it was due to their retirement age and not being re-engaged.

Mr Bainimarama said the midwives would be re-engaged and the Midwifery Society had his and the ministry’s support.

Ms Galuvakadua said there was a need to re-engage midwives, but at the age of 55 they were retiring despite being fit to provide some services.

“They are well skilled, competent and some have been reengaged already to support the number of midwifery staffing right now for the maternity like in Makoi,” she said.

“We have been asked to advertise and we are thankful that 27 new positions are for mid-wives and the process is taking place.

“But, we need reassurance from the ministry and the Government that we have to have midwives engaged even when they are 55.

“This started two years ago because of the needs at CWM Hospital and we were told to plan for Makoi.”

Edited by Percy Kean

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