Sorsogon Province Trains Health Service Providers as Certified BEmONC Trainers to Enhance Maternal and Neonatal Care

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In a transformative partnership, the Bicol CHD-5 joined forces with Bicol University in 2022 to embark on a mission of training excellence.

Among the health service providers who embarked on this journey were the dedicated trio of Dr. Marilyn Amisola (OB specialist), Dr. April Magtarayo (OB specialist), and Dr. Marlon Villoso (Pediatrician) from Sorsogon Provincial Hospital.

Their passion for improving maternal and neonatal care led them to the BEmONC Training of Trainers (ToT), where they dedicated themselves to the rigorous process of becoming trainers. 

Fast forward to Oct. 2-8, 2023, and the culmination of their journey was marked by the Basic Emergency Obstetric and Newborn Care (BEmONC) training for midwives in Sorsogon Province.

With Dr. Marilyn Amisola, Dr. April Magtarayo, and Dr. Marlon Villoso at the forefront, this training concluded with resounding success. 

“Interactive sessions allowed attendees to apply their newfound knowledge, fostering confidence and competence. These sessions provided invaluable hands-on experience and expertise to ensure that midwives can confidently respond to pregnancy-related complications in the province of Sorsogon,” said Dr. Marlon Villoso, one of the BEmONC trainers and a pediatrician at Sorsogon Provincial Hospital. 

“We are also thrilled to see our midwives embrace this challenge and become certified BEmONC trainers. They are the driving force behind the improvement of maternal and neonatal care in Sorsogon Province,” he added.  

The engagement of an accredited BEmONC training center in the region, facilitated by Jhpiego in coordination with Bicol University, enabled master trainers to conduct province-specific training in Sorsogon.

Esteemed experts in maternal care also delivered informative lectures, delving deep into the intricacies of maternal and neonatal care and related topics. 

“During the week-long training, participants immersed themselves in a wide-ranging program that included lectures and hands-on activities. Practical demonstrations provided hands-on exposure to critical procedures, ensuring participants were well-prepared for real-life scenarios,” said Jane Mapusao-Pecson, BeMonc master trainer, and nurse educator. 

“The dedication and enthusiasm shown by our health service providers during this training were truly inspiring. We are excited about the prospect of having a strong team of BEmONC trainers within the province in improving healthcare outcomes,” she added. 

The program continued at Sorsogon Provincial Hospital, where midwives engaged in a practicum and assessment period.

Here, they put their skills to the test in a clinical setting under the guidance of experienced mentors, solidifying their abilities in maternal and neonatal care. 

“During the practicum at the Sorsogon Provincial Hospital, we had the privilege to put our knowledge into action, with a strong focus on vital skills. If we become certified as BEmONC trainers, we can be well-equipped to disseminate our knowledge, contributing to a brighter and healthier future for mothers and newborns,” said Noe Ariate, a dedicated midwife at the Rural Health Unit (RHU) of Casiguran, who is committed to making a positive impact on maternal and neonatal care. 

“BEmONC skills for midwives are a cornerstone of maternal and newborn care. They empower midwives to be the first responders in critical moments, ensuring safe deliveries and healthier outcomes. These skills are not just tools; they are lifelines for mothers and newborns,” added Rizalina Rebustillo, a midwife at Sorsogon Provincial Hospital. 

The didactic and clinical practicum will continue for the second round of BEmONC Training from Oct. 12-22, 2023, targeting nurses and doctors in public health facilities. 

Jhpiego, in partnership with the province of Sorsogon, played a pivotal role in facilitating technical assistance to enhance the capacity of health service providers in BEmONC.

This achievement demonstrates the unwavering commitment of Sorsogon Province and its healthcare providers to enhancing the quality of healthcare services.

The certified BEmONC trainers will be able to share their expertise, leaving a lasting impact on maternal and neonatal healthcare in the region. 

This accomplishment was made possible with valuable support from the MSD for Mothers Global Grant Program, through the project Improving Quality of Maternal Health Care in Health Facilities in the Philippines in support of the implementation of universal health coverage in Sorsogon. 

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