On November 23–24, an international conference organised by the Norwegian Society of Perinatal Medicine was held in Lillehammer, Norway, the purpose of which was to review innovations and opportunities in perinatal health care in various countries.
Alina Liepinaitienė, a lecturer at the Nursing Department of the Faculty of Medicine, was invited to represent Lithuania and Kauno kolegija Higher Education Institution (HEI) at this conference. During the conference, the lecturer presented the characteristics of midwifery care in the war zone in Ukraine. Although there is less and less information about the war in Ukraine in the media, the health care system in Ukraine is still in a state of war, and the land of Ukraine itself is ravaged by war.
During the presentation, the lecturer talked about the challenges faced by midwives during the war in Ukraine, how they deal with medical aid problems, and how they ensure a safe environment for mothers and newborns. During the war, more than 88 thousand newborns were born in Ukraine, of which approximately 12 per cent were born in an active war zone, in the basements. Obstetric care in this country during the war is in a critical condition, women give birth in basements, there are no proper aseptic and antiseptic facilities, and medicines, especially those received from aid, from other countries are not suitable for use. Midwives in Ukraine face countless challenges to ensure a safe environment for mothers. There is no possibility to even talk about the creation of comfort in childbirth, except in those regions where there are no active hostilities.
The participants of the conference were very actively involved in the discussion, discussed, and analysed what are the possibilities of assistance for midwives in the war zone, not only in Ukraine but also in other countries, such as Israel.
The Norwegian Society of Perinatal Medicine is considered one of the largest and most valuable scientific associations in Norway. After the presentation, the Kauno kolegija HEI lecturer received an endless amount of feedback about the presentation, the message conveyed and the shocking images from the war zone. The members of the Norwegian Society of Perinatal Medicine invited A. Liepinaitienė to contribute to their scientific activities and encouraged them to participate in their international projects.
The participants who listened to the report and took part in the discussion expressed that the videos, photos from real life in Ukraine and the work of midwives shocked them very much, and reminded them that although safety is above our heads, there are places in the world where we can help, contribute to their well-being and to support.