Development. Not always the beacon of hope we want it to be. It can mean so many things to so many people. For some it can seem a backward step or an afront to what’s familiar. Not necessarily welcome or appreciated.
Having just returned from this year’s Safe Arrivals training Dr Lois McKellar from the University of South Australia knows first hand the moral dilemma that development can be. For instance, what happens to Cambodia’s traditional birth attendants when the national health policy is aiming to phase them out? And who will the hundreds of thousands of pregnant women that live in Cambodia’s rural and remote communities go to to have their babies?
There’s no doubt change can be confusing. (Just ask my mum. After nearly eight decades on the planet she recently discovered the internet)
Heading into this years training we faced off on Cambodia’s maternal health quandary. How do you save lives from death or injury and at the same time honour the traditions of the past? And is it possible for a government to transition a country’s maternal health system overnight – even if they wanted to?
Well we’re looking forward to gathering the evidence from Dr McKellar’s research – believing it will go a long way to providing some important answers. And traditional birth attendants will continue to play an important, all be it ‘changing’ role in reducing Cambodia’s high rate of maternal mortality.