It is no surprise that the world needs more health workers. In fact, even though there are currently 22 million nurses and 2 million midwives globally there is an urgent need for 18 million more health workers in order to reach universal health care coverage by 2030 according to the World Health Organization.
There is a particular need for 9 million nurses and midwives as they are critical components to a robust health system and are often on the front lines of general and critical care including:
- Prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of HIV, tuberculosis, malaria and other communicable diseases
- Prevention, diagnosis and treatment of noncommunicable diseases
- Sexual and reproductive health services, including family planning, and maternal and newborn health care, including immunization and breastfeeding support.
The WHO along with partners, the International Confederation of Midwives (ICM), International Council of Nurses (ICN), Nursing Now and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) will advocate throughout the year for greater investments in midwives and nurses as the global health community celebrates the International Year of the Nurse and the Midwife.
“Nurses and midwives are the backbone of every health system: in 2020 we’re calling on all countries to invest in nurses and midwives as part of their commitment to health for all,” said Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the WHO Director-General.
You can also support the International Year of the Nurse and the Midwife by supporting organizations that educate midwives and nurses. These two organizations I recommend supporting as I have seen their tremendous work in the field.
- Midwives for Haiti
- Project Mercy (Ethiopia)
What organizations that advocate and educate midwives and nurses do you support?