South Pacific Nursing and Midwifery leaders meet to discuss the health of the region
Nursing and midwifery leaders from 14 countries in the South Pacific came together on 2th-4th November 2016 for the 7th South Pacific Chief Nursing and Midwifery Officers Alliance (SPCNMOA) meeting, alongside the 18th South Pacific Nursing Forum Conference, supported by the Solomon Islands Ministry of Health, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade Australia (DFAT) and WHO. These meetings were convened to discuss and work to address a variety of health challenges within the Pacific.
The following recommendations have been prioritised to address these ongoing challenges. SPCNMOA is committed to:
• health workforce policies that ensure investments in building skills and creating jobs are linked, to maximise inclusive economic growth. Nurses and midwives of the South Pacific recognise this requires a whole-of-government approach, involving ministries of labour, finance, education and health, as well as funders, professional associations, trade unions, the private sector and civil society, in line with WHO Global Strategic Directions for Strengthening Nursing and Midwifery 2016-2020.
• supporting the UN High Level Commission on Health Employment and Economic Growth.
• addressing efficient, effective and affordable management of non-communicable diseases using a primary health approach with population wellness based interventions in collaboration with families, communities and other key stakeholders.
• developing antibiotic country usage and compliance policies, exploring expanding nursing curricula, working with WHO and developing across government strategies on antimicrobial resistance.
• strengthen midwifery leadership, practice, regulation and associations within the Pacific, starting by establishing stronger links with International Confederation of Midwives for the meeting in 2018.
• provide an environment to support and encourage nursing and midwifery leadership through peer support, development of effective partnerships and networks, and continue to apply for Leadership Fellowship Programs and funding.
• increase and sustain the capacity of preparedness contingency plans for use in situations such as disasters and outbreaks including vector borne diseases. This incorporates financial requirements/budget information for Health Ministries to cover training, equipment and human resources to:
• discuss opportunities to include disaster management within educational programs to build nurses and midwives resilience.
• explore Ministry of Health engagement policy for nurses and midwives involved in disasters.
• review each country’s legislations and regulations impacting on nursing and midwifery services, understanding the gaps and barriers in the legislation, especially:
• educational quality, accreditation, competencies, practice safety and standards at rural, remote, country, sub-regional, regional levels.
• examining and defining scope of health assistant personnel in the Pacific.
The full SPCNMOA report of the meeting and photographs will be available on the website: www.spcnmoa.com.
The meeting Chair was passed from Dr Amelia Latu Afuha’amango Tu’ipulotu - Chief Nurse, Tonga to Mr Michael Larui - Chief Nursing Officer, Solomon Islands for 2016-2018. The meeting was organised by Secretariat for the SPCNMOA – WHO CC UTS and sponsored by WHO, International Council of Nurses, Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation, WHO CC UTS, and the Midwifery Council of New Zealand.