Professional societies and their role in sexual and reproductive health: Nester T Moyo, Senior Midwifery Adviser at ICM, gave the midwife's view at a training programme on sexual and reproductive health held in Sweden.


As part of an international training programme in 'Sexual and reproductive health and rights', held in Malmo, Sweden, February 17-March 14, 2008, Nester Moyo, on behalf of ICM, was invited to co-facilitate a session on professional societies and their potentially significant role in sexual and reproductive health practice and research, o Other speakers included Jerker Liljestrand and Karen Odberg Pettersson of Lund University.

National societies

The Lithuanian example: The Lithuanian Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (LAGD) and Lithuanian Association of Midwives (LAS) gave presentations about their organisations and their role in the present day health care system. The two bodies have a long history of collaboration. These professional organisations, especially LAGD, have a major influence on the reorganisation and optimisation of perinatal care in Lithuania, according to WHO standards. This has included implementation of evidence-based practices, demedicalisation of the practices around normal labour and delivery, family involvement, enhancing the role of the midwife, perinatal care regionalisation, improvement of SR health care quality and education of specialists.

The Moldovan example: The Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (SOGM), the Society of Perinatology and the Society of Midwives of Moldova were involved in the development of national guidelines for perinatal care, which define organisational and methodological aspects of perinatal care in the country.

In collaboration with WHO Europe, RCOG (UK) and FIGO, professional societies implemented evidence-based, non-punitive and confidential forms of maternal and perinatal mortality and morbidity audit. SOGM has a leading role in improving access to and quality of abortion services in the Republic of Moldova.

The Swedish example: The Swedish Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology (SFOG) and the Swedish Association of Midwives also have a long history of collaboration. They presented their respective societies, what they do and what impact their work has on public health. They explained how agreements have led to the improvement of cooperation between professionals, to enhanced competence and quality of care, and to consensus about where to draw the lines between the two professions.


The International Confederation of Midwives (ICM) and the International Federation of Gynacologists and Obstetricians (FIGO) are...

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