The National Primary Health Care Development Agency has begun mobilizing 1,586 basic midwives for deployment to primary health centres nationwide in a modified Midwives Services Scheme (MSS).
All graduated from midwifery schools between March and September in 2016 and 2017, and the deployment is a one-year posting mandatory before they are licensed by the Nursing and Midwifery Council of Nigeria.
The MSS using older midwives was modified to use young graduates in efforts to cut costs, according to NPHCDA executive director Faisal Shuaib.
“This has the dual advantage of providing practical experience to the midwives prior to full certification as well as ensuring availability of skilled health workers in the very rural facilities,” he said at the start of a five-day orientation for midwifery graduates from the north central zone.
“In addition, the cost of running this new scheme would be very much less than that of the old MSS. This change of approach has remained valuable to the successful implementation of the project.”
The orientation has been zoned to save graduates the cost of travelling to a national orientation venue.
It covers training in basic guide and monitoring for routine immunisation, disease surveillance, data management, cold chain management of vaccines.
Before their licensing and deployment to designated primary health centres, the regulatory council will verify the midwives’ certification and take biometrics for documentation on the council’s database.