Improving midwifery educators’ capacity to teach emergency obstetrics and newborn care in Kenya universities: a pre-post study



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Background: International Confederation of Midwives and World Health Organization recommend core competencies for midwifery educators for effective theory and practical teaching and practice. Deficient curricula and lack of skilled midwifery educators are important factors affecting the quality of graduates from midwifery programmes. The objective of the study was to assess the capacity of university midwifery educators to deliver the updated competency-based curriculum after the capacity strengthening workshop in Kenya. Methods: The study used a quasi-experimental (pre-post) design. A four-day training to strengthen the capacity of educators to deliver emergency obstetrics and newborn care (EmONC) within the updated curriculum was conducted for 30 midwifery educators from 27 universities in Kenya. Before-after training assessments in knowledge, two EmONC skills and self-perceived confidence in using different teaching methodologies to deliver the competency-based curricula were conducted. Wilcoxon signed-rank test was used to compare the before-after knowledge and skills mean scores. McNemar test was used to compare differences in the proportion of educators’ self-reported confidence in applying the different teaching pedagogies. P-values < 0.05 were considered statistically significant. Findings: Thirty educators (7 males and 23 females) participated, of whom only 11 (37%) had participated in a previous hands-on basic EmONC training – with 10 (91%) having had the training over two years beforehand. Performance mean scores increased significantly for knowledge (60.3% − 88. %), shoulder dystocia management (51.4 – 88.3%), newborn resuscitation (37.9 − 89.1%), and overall skill score (44.7 − 88.7%), p < 0.0001. The proportion of educators with confidence in using different stimulatory participatory teaching methods increased significantly for simulation (36.7 – 70%, p = 0.006), scenarios (53.3 – 80%, p = 0.039) and peer teaching and support (33.3 – 63.3%, p = 0.022). There was improvement in use of lecture method (80 – 90%, p = 0.289), small group discussions (73.3 – 86.7%, p = 0.344) and giving effective feedback (60 – 80%, p = 0.146), although this was not statistically significant. Conclusion: Training improved midwifery educators’ knowledge, skills and confidence to deliver the updated EmONC-enhanced curriculum. To ensure that midwifery educators maintain their competence, there is need for