Back 16 July 2015

New ICM Midwifery Services Framework (MSF)

To strengthen the midwifery workforce and quality of midwifery care, ICM and partners have launched the new MSF (Midwifery Services Framework for Developing Sexual, Reproductive, Maternal and Newborn Health (SRMNH) Services by Midwives).

Many countries need to set up or improve their midwifery services, while global and national development partners are also keen to include midwifery care into national health systems.  The MSF offers a systemic approach to improving quality of sexual and reproductive health care through the integration of midwifery services across the health system.

The MSF supports a midwife-led model of care, which provides effective and desirable services for women and their families. As an evidence-based tool for developing new or strengthening existing midwifery services it can be used by health system developers and planners, maternal and newborn health experts, policy makers and other stakeholders.

What is the MSF for?

The MSF shows governments and others how to

- set up or strengthen national midwifery programmes
- integrate midwifery into the Human Resources for Health (HRH) agenda
- assess what needs improvement and how to achieve the desired changes in SRMNH services.

It also explains key midwifery concepts and offers a step-by-step approach to improving quality of care, education, regulation, and effective management of the workforce - while also showing how to monitor and evaluate progress. 

The MSF identifies relevant tools from ICM and partner organisations including

- WHO’s Midwifery Strengthening Toolkit

- Jhpiego/MCHIP Pre-Service Education Toolkit for Midwives

- UNFPA/WHO/Intel/Jhpiego e-learning modules on essential maternal and newborn life-saving skills. 

How to use the MSF

To use the MSF, national governments can initiate a meeting with ICM experts to identify what kind of support is needed, who would be involved and when. This is followed by a workshop with national stakeholders in SRMNH services to work through the steps of the MSF (Box 1) and to begin national actions.

ICM provides support in setting up the working groups for the next steps and can provide further guidance one year after the national MSF workshop, and beyond.

More information from the International Confederation of Midwives at, visit or call +31 70 3060520.




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