Professional development

A maternity unit together with staff accommodation, on the site of an existing primary healthcare clinic at the Chilaweni Village, Blantyre was constructed and serves a catchment population of 38,000 people living in 23 neighboring villages. An integrated training program led by a specialist Midwife trainer was also part of the project.

Gloria Nkhula is the Deputy Matron at the maternity clinic. Gloria comments “I have gained so much from the mentorship program in terms of my clinical skills, confidence, decision making and leadership skills. The training is so valuable and offers us a chance to be mentored on site; our mentors can talk us through procedures at that moment. In the beginning, there were so many referrals to tertiary facilities because staff lacked the confidence to know when to refer; this is no longer the case. I feel that I am becoming really competent with many clinical procedures, whereas previously, I was unsure. At first we had to get used to the idea that this was not a “policing” exercise but a real opportunity to learn without being judged. The program is amazing and not only is it adapted to the needs of each midwife but it also offers us the opportunity to fulfil our CPD (continuous profession development) requirements. My record keeping is better; I am actually conscious of the need to be respectful towards patients and consider their wishes. The atmosphere is great and the staff are working well as a team. I am very happy that the mentorship will continue next year.”