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Electives & International Midwifery Consultancy: A Resource for Students, Midwives and Other Health Professionals

This book provides practical, evidence based guidance which is relevant to many development projects in the 21st century, using reflective practice and sharing lessons learned through experience.

It focuses primarily on the needs of the midwife, nurse and other health professional working cross culturally, but its lessons can be shared by professionals in other fields. It is useful for students planning an elective or a gap year in the developing world. It is easily readable, presenting the reality of tough assignments but not devoid of the pathos and humour that inevitably accompany cross cultural encounters at some of the deepest points of human experience.

Scope and Contents

The chapters are largely divided geographically. A thumbnail picture of the country or countries presents some background data, and then the text is presented under the following headings:

  • Exploring experience - this section relates an autobiographical account of consultancy experience

  • Examining the evidence - relevant research evidence is examined in the light of the topics explored in the preceding section

  • Reflecting on practice - personal reflections on the consultancy practice that has been explored are shared

  • Lessons learned and shared - lessons learned through the experience, evidence and reflective practice are shared with the reader

  • Some reflective exercises for the reader - these are suggested to assist the reader in personal preparation for or development in international assignments

References are listed at the end of each chapter

Recommended further reading and useful websites are listed at the end of the text.

About the Author

Gaynor D Maclean is a midwife with extensive experience in clinical practice, teaching, research and statutory body service in the UK. In 1991 she took up work as a consultant with the World Health Organization in order to author the WHO Safe Motherhood educational modules for teachers of midwifery. She has worked with numerous other government and non-governmental organizations. For the past 20 years her work has focused on promoting safer childbirth, undertaking assignments mainly in Africa and Asia. Pursuing studies surrounding her international work she achieved a PhD at the University of Surrey and has been endowed as an honorary fellow of Swansea University. She was made a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in HM the Queen's New Year Honours list 2011 for services to midwifery overseas.


International midwifery, development, electives, Millennium Development Goals


Midwives, nurses and others concerned with international development, students undertaking electives or gap year assignments in the developing world, useful reference for those supervising or teaching overseas students in the UK or other western country.

ISBN: 9781856425025