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childbirth, global health, maternal-child health, midwifery



  1. Kennedy, Holly Powell PhD, CNM, FACNM, FAAN
  2. Stalls, Suzanne MA, CNM, FACNM
  3. Kaplan, Lorrie Kline CAE
  4. Grenier, Lindsay MPH, CNM
  5. Fujioka, Angeline MPH, CNM


Abstract: The mission of the American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM) is to promote the health and well-being of women and newborns within their families and communities through development and support of the profession of midwifery. The United Nations Millennium Development Goals 4 and 5 are to reduce infant and child mortality and improve maternal health through universal access to reproductive and reduction of maternal mortality. Significant, multilevel efforts are needed to achieve these goals. Over the last three decades, ACNM has mentored several generations of midwives in more than 30 countries who have contributed talent and commitment to making the world a safer place for women and children. We have developed invaluable institutional knowledge of the components required to build a profession of competent and qualified healthcare providers of maternal and infant care. The major focal areas of our Department of Global Outreach include (1) development and implementation of in-service training systems, (2) integrated preservice education, (3) strengthening of midwifery and other healthcare professions, and (4) community education and mobilization. ACNM's approach emphasizes partnership and capacity building with both individuals and organizations to strengthen the locus of control and ownership of projects within the host country, incorporating evidence-based best practices with flexibility and creativity. The future relies on upcoming generations to creatively work with multiple disciplines and across nations to solve the complex issues endangering women and families worldwide, especially mothers and infants.