The successful graduation of 61 nurses and midwives of the Esther Bacon School of Nursing and Midwifery (EBSNM) in Zorzor, Lofa County has shown the significant progress the school is making.
The graduates, who obtained diplomas recently after three years hard study, comprised the ninth graduating class. The event was held at the Curran Lutheran Church Hospital Compound in Zorzor city.
Twelve persons graduated as Registered Nurse (12), 39 as Registered Midwifery and 10 Certified Midwifery to Registered Midwifery.
Willimai Geninyan, Director of the EBSNM, lauded the support of the Maternal and Child Survival Program (MCSP) and Human Resources for Health (HRH) Project.
MCSP HRH is a USAID funded project providing support to the EBSNM with its focus on supporting Faculty Development Program, which is intended to strengthen performance of teachers and preceptors; the Leadership Management Development Program, technical updates particularly the Perinatal and EmONC training using the Low Dose High Frequency (LDHF) approach, and upgrading of the Simulation Lab and Library.
Other interventions by MCSP HRH include establishing a fully equipped computer lab with full Internet coverage and the provision of a vehicle to transport students to clinical sites to ensure critical supervision.
MCSP works alongside the Government of Liberia and partners to strengthen health services. MCSP/HRH is working to improve health workforce readiness, with a focus on reinforcing entry-level Registered Midwives and Medical Laboratory Technicians’ Pre-Service Education.
The Esther Bacon School of Nursing and Midwifery is one of the six Pre-Service Training Institutions supported by MCSP as part of global effort to improve maternal and newborn health outcomes funded by USAID. It is a primary support to the MOH National Health Workforce Program for increasing the quality and quantity of human resources for health.
The graduates were presented to the Chief of Medical Staff at the Curran Lutheran Hospital in Lofa County and they were further presented to the County Health Team and the Ministry of Health.
During the presentation of the graduates, Geninyan added that the out-going students were prepared because “the teachers and preceptors in the school were now trained and using effective methodology in teaching and student assessment”.
She added that staff at the facility are now confident and are providing current best practice services in Respectful Maternity Care (RMC). The nursing and midwifery school is now able to save lives and increase hospital and clinic utilization, which is teaching students to provide quality services.
Said Madam Geninyan: “The students are not only competent but confident in carrying out maternal and newborn procedures and managing patients through practicing at the Simulation Center in the school and Preceptor Corners in the hospital. There is no doubt about their preparedness as this has been verified by health facilities and CHTs where the students went for affiliation”.
The college now has an updated curriculum and other learning materials including current editions of textbooks and access to a state of the art computer lab, and the leadership of the school is now able to use data for making decisions and are mobilized and managing resources effectively, Willimai said.
The EBSNM Director declared that the administration plans to make EBSNM a full-fresh degree level Institution; adding, “To make our institution learning friendly, we have embarked on the construction of a multi-purpose complex, which is currently at foundation level”, she concluded.
The Chief of Party of the MCSP HRH Project then emphasized that there’s “still a long way to go”.