Nursing & Midwifery 2020

Nurses and midwives are critical to expanding primary health care and achieving universal health coverage. For 40 years, IntraHealth has worked with government and local partners to plan, develop, manage, and support nursing workforces worldwide.

In partnership with Nursing Now, a three-year global campaign (2017-2020) to raise the status and profile of nursing, IntraHealth and Johnson & Johnson produced Investing in the Power of Nurse Leadership: What Will It Take?, a report that investigates gender-related barriers to nurse leadership and makes recommendations for policymakers and implementers at the global, national, and institutional levels to promote nursing leadership and gender equality in the global nursing workforce.

Women comprise up to 95% of nurses in some countries. But they often hold only 25% of leadership positions.


Nurses and midwives make up over 50% of the health workforce in many of the countries where we work—yet they're often not allowed to work to their full of their potential, lack resources and support, or are underpaid. That’s why we’re thrilled the World Health Organization has designated 2020 as the Year of the Nurse and the Midwife in an effort to raise the profile of nursing and midwifery, acknowledge that we can't achieve universal health coverage without greater investment in these health workers, and galvanize the political will to create change. 


In partnership with Seed Global Health, Frontline Health Workers Coalition, Partners in Health, and Nursing Now, IntraHealth will highlight nurses' and midwives' contributions and advocate for greater investment in them through a special year-long campaign. Join the conversation: #NursesLead #MidwivesLead.

Kadidia is a midwife at Koulikoro hospital in Mali, where IntraHealth works to train surgeons to provide fistula repair services. Photo by Nana Kofi Acquah for IntraHealth International.

Maria Alicia Aba is a nurse Guatemala City. IntraHealth has worked to improve HIV care and treatment in the region for over a decade. Photo by Trevor Snapp for IntraHealth International.

Sofia Mbandeka is a nurse at Olukonda ARV clinic northern Namibia. IntraHealth helped bring back nurses out of retirement to help fill a crucial gap in the country’s health workforce. Photo by Morgana Wingard for IntraHealth International.

Beatrice Evarist Lubangura is a nurse in Ukara, Tanzania, where IntraHealth works to expand access to voluntary medical male circumcision. Photo by Josh Estey for IntraHealth International.

Mary Babiry is a midwife in Jinja, Uganda. IntraHealth has worked to strengthen human resources for health in the country for over two decades. Photo by Tommy Trenchard for IntraHealth International.

Selected Achievements

Improved the capacity of nurses leading community health facilities in Zambia to lead frontline teams to achieve high-quality services and advance UHC through a Certificate in Leadership and Management Practice program
In Uganda, contributed to an assessment of public health workplaces and used the findings to inform Sexual Harassment Policy Implementation Guidelines approved in 2018 by the Ministry of Health
Facilitated storytelling training for health workers to advocate at the highest level for global health policy change
Partnered with the government of Senegal to implement Tutorat, a “whole facility, whole system” performance improvement approach that combines facility-based training for nurses and other health workers with supportive coaching.
In Namibia, supported implementation of the government’s policy on nurse-initiated management of antriretroviral therapy (ART), a task-sharing initiative to equip nurses to initiate and manage ART
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