Lira University in Uganda Graduates 59 New Midwives

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Seed Global Health supported the university to develop a bachelor’s degree program in midwifery

Fifty-nine students recently completed their bachelor’s degrees in midwifery at Lira University in Uganda.  

Lira University Vice Chancellor Professor Jasper Ogwal-Okeng spoke at the graduation ceremony and took the opportunity to express his gratitude to Seed Global Health and the head of the midwifery department for their relentless efforts to strengthen midwifery education. All 59 graduates are highly-skilled, practice-ready midwives, who will be assigned to health facilities across Uganda for internships.

Central to the success of the midwifery program at Lira University is its comprehensive curriculum, which encompasses both theoretical knowledge and practical skills training. Students receive their academic training in the classroom at Lira University and their practical skills training at Lira Referral Hospital, where they learn to practice midwifery under the guidance of experienced midwives.

What sets Lira University’s midwifery program apart from traditional diploma programs is this integrated approach bridging theory and practice, which includes specialized training in managing pregnancy complications, such as postpartum hemorrhage and eclampsia. Graduates emerge not only equipped with essential midwifery skills but also with the confidence and proficiency to tackle any complications that may arise during birth.

One graduating student, Wekwanya Stuart Joseph, said, “Through my time working on hospital wards, I have become confident in my ability to identify pregnant mothers who show signs of preeclampsia, such as blurry vision and high blood pressure after 20 weeks of pregnancy, and I know how to manage their care according to recommended guidelines. I’ve also developed strong cooperation skills through teamwork and leadership skills from frequently being assigned as a group leader.”

Since the inception of the midwifery bachelor’s degree program at Lira University, Seed Global Health has played a crucial role in enhancing the learning environment. Seed has supported the creation of a skills lab, where students have the opportunity to practice emergency simulations, using state-of-the-art equipment while practicing on mannequins. These simulations offer a safe space for students to make and learn from mistakes, a luxury not always afforded in real-life settings where lives hang in the balance.

Seed also recruits experienced midwives from around the world who embed with Lira University and Lira Referral Hospital for at least one year. Known as Seed “educators,” they partner with the faculty at Lira University to develop and strengthen the curriculum, train and mentor emerging nurses and midwives, and move students from theory to practice using a competency-based bedside teaching model, in which they work together with trainees not only in the classroom, but also at Lira Referral Hospital, caring for patients.

The Lira University midwifery program also emphasizes community engagement. Midwifery students provide postnatal care through routine visits to new mothers in the local community. The midwifery students travel directly to the homes of new mothers and provide breastfeeding, nutrition, and other postnatal care support. This work further bridges the gap between theory and real-world practice while also improving maternal and newborn health outcomes.


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