In May 2006, the World Health Assembly endorsed Resolution WHA59.27, reaffirming the crucial contribution of the nursing and midwifery professions to health systems and the health of the people they serve. In response, the Federal Minister of Health for Pakistan, Mr Mohammad Nasir Khan, former chair of the WHO Executive Board, hosted a high level global consultation on nursing and midwifery in March 2007, organised in collaboration with the World Health Organisation, the International Council of Nurses and the International Confederation of Midwives.
This Declaration is founded on our belief that efficient, effective nursing and midwifery services are critical to achieving the Millennium Development Goals, country priority programmes including primary health care, health systems strengthening, and the general health of all nations. Therefore, we believe:
All people should have access to competent nurses and midwives who provide care, supervision and support in all settings.
2 A coordinated, integrated, collaborative, sustainable approach to planning, policy and health care delivery is necessary to strengthen nursing and midwifery services and acknowledge that countries in crisis or conflict have unique needs.
Urgent attention is needed in three key areas:
* scaling up nursing and midwifery capacity
* skill mix of existing and new cadres of workers
* positive workplace environments.
We affirm that equitable, efficient and effective nursing and midwifery service delivery requires a range of personnel and that, prior to creating new cadres, investments should be made in mobilizing nurses and midwives currently under-utilized, unemployed, working in other sectors, or who have left active practice.
We declare the following principles fundamental to decision making, effective policy development, planning, implementation, evaluation and quality assurance of education and health services, and of value to a wide range of stakeholders.
Principles for scaling up nursing and midwifery capacity
Scaling up nursing and midwifery capacity encompasses a range of strategies that address workforce planning, education, skill-mix, maximum utilization of roles, career frameworks, work environments and regulatory frameworks to ensure efficient, effective, and safe health systems.
High level political leadership and commitment, a multi-sectoral approach, significant financial investment in education and employment expansion, and active participation...