Public health covers wide concepts and health care present one of the major areas of importance for consideration. Although the contribution of midwifery and maternity services in health care present a small part of the health it remains significant as a part of the wider approach involving different an actors, factors and agencies. Public health plays an essential role in ensuring the delivery of optimal health for communities (Hegarty, et al., 2007). Public health is a massive concept, through which health care services play a minor but very significant part. Equally, the contribution of maternity services and that of midwifery care is not yet well pronounced but remains very important, as part of a much broader approach that embraces a variety of factors, interventions and players. Precisely, in the development of valuation skills and strength based attitudes towards health improvement and inequalities as well as important gaps in either clinical or technical skills.
Presently, public health seems inaccessible from the daily routines of a busy maternity hospital and the midwives employed within the system. However, with the many modern governments focused on the reform of health care and hospitals, especially on the maternity services, it is becoming more imperative that midwives enthusiastically engage in the wider issues of public health. In addition, midwives have an important if not essential public health role, which is rarely acknowledged. Carlson (2005) defines midwives as public health practitioners, though they are not expected to raise the value of this viewpoint. Further, she acknowledges that there are numerous challenges to midwives identifying their contribution to public health practice (Carlson, 2005).
Consequently, midwives and obstetricians are jointly accountable for the birth environments in which women labor and for the provision of afterwards or otherwise evidence-based care. The midwifery profession has a significant role to childbearing women, and their objective is to work toward executing evidence-based practice in the communities in which they practice. Thus, midwives are obligated to employ evidence-based developments and evaluate ways to change practice, including the application of midwifery and similar involvements that reflect as being beneficial or likely to be beneficial (Hodnett, Gates, Hofmeyr, & Sakala, 2007). Accordingly, midwifery practitioners hold an important position in prompting the nature of care they deliver.
Therefore, it is a fact that midwives delivers various public health interventions on systematic foundations and their involvement in maternal and infant health should not be taken for granted. Therefore, it is imperative to appreciate the public health care importance of antenatal screening programs since it specifically helps midwives to accomplish a greater perspective and this may enable them to reflect on the wider effects of mass screening programs when practicing in the public health care sector (Biro, 2011). In addition, other public health programs that midwives are enthusiastically involved in the postnatal period include; immunization and neonatal screening. Further, by midwives providing accurate information and evidence supporting such programs, midwives are better placed to encourage parents to be active and involved rather than being passive participants.
In conclusion, midwives and care staff just like the nurses make important assistances to improving and protecting the public’s health. This will be a very objective role, and it is not only important to give specialized care alone, but to help people, families and communities with an aim of maximizing their wellbeing, improving health outcomes and reducing inequalities.
Biro, M. (2011). What has public health got to do with midwifery? Midwives’ role in securing better health outcomes for mothers and babies. Women and Birth; Volume 24, 17-23.
Carlson , C. ( 2005). Expanding Horizons: developing a public health perspective in midwifery. In O. Luanaigh , & P. Carlson , Midwifery and public health: future directions, new opportunities. Edinburgh: Elsevier.
Hegarty , K., Brown , S., Gunn , J., Forster , D., Nagle , C., Grant , B., & Lumley, J. (2007). Women’s views and outcomes of an educational intervention designed to enhance psychosocial support for women during pregnancy. Birth ; 34(2), 155—63.
Hodnett, E., Gates , S., Hofmeyr , G., & Sakala , C. ( 2007). Continuous support for women during childbirth. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews Vol. 3.