Background Skilled attendance at birth is only 42% in Bangladesh. 19000 midwives required to attend 3.3 million births each year. Hence as first time private sector initiative BRAC University (BRACU) started 3 year Diploma in Midwifery to develop 410 competent midwives in hard to reach areas following hub and spoke model.
Objectives To explore factors associated with deployment of midwives in the community as a new cadre as well as professionalization of midwifery
Methods Focus group discussion conducted among prospective midwives to explore their views, perception on prospects and challenges regarding deployment of midwives and professionalization of midwifery.
Result Students of Diploma in Midwifery opined that after completing Diploma and getting license they can deliver service in the community independently through establishing birthing hut or being involved with service delivery organization. Existing unskilled providers as well as community people may show unfavorable attitude towards delivery of MNCH service by the newly graduate midwives.
If local level community leaders, stakeholders and BRACU representative introduce midwives with the community people then enabling environment will be created for midwives to become recognized in the community for serving pregnant mother and newborn. Technical support from relevant experts, BRACU will be needed for the midwives when they will start to deliver services in the community. When midwives will get job or deliver services in the community independently then beyond their job or private practice they will provide service to pregnant mother and newborn of poor family with less or no service fee. Common and standard service delivery fee are to be set for private practice of midwives in the community.
Conclusion Based on FGD findings necessary advocacy and communications are planned to generate demand for midwives in the community and to establish midwifery as a profession in the country.
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