Empowered Midwives from Chile and Peru fighting for their professional rights
The Peruvian and Chilean Member Associations are among the oldest professional associations in Latin America (192 and 184 years old respectively), therefore it is appalling that both institutions are currently facing a hard legal struggle to maintain their professional status. In Perú, there is a motion to exclude midwives from the Medical Regulation. Out of a total of 36,000 Midwives, 93% are women and therefore this new legislation would discriminate against them on the grounds of their gender which would generate inequalities. In Chile, the Comptroller General of the Republic is revising the scope of midwifery provision and how it is delivered in the future, most certainly restricting methods of practice within and out of hospital settings, thus opening the exercise of midwifery to other health care professionals who are not midwives, putting maternal and newborn health at risk.
ICM has been supporting both MAs from Chile and Peru, by participating in the Peruvian Congress with a message from President Franka Cadée and the presence of the ICM regional Board Member Sandra Oyarzo Torres. In the Chilean situation, President Cadée has written a letter to the President of the Republic advocating for the rights of midwives and ICM regional Board Member Sandra Oyarzo Torres has participated in work groups at the Ministry of Health, supporting the recognition of professional midwives and their regulation.