Ethiopia's midwives grapple with the COVID-19 while ensuring safe delivery

Today Ethiopia has more than 70 confirmed cases of COVID-19, a fact that has placed the country’s midwives on high alert.

“Midwives cannot maintain physical distance with a labouring mother like in other wards, making them too prone to acquiring infection with the virus,” said Dawit Mequanint, a midwife working in the Tikur Anbessa Specialized Hospital, the country’s largest tertiary hospital.  

Around the world, doctors and midwives are struggling to obtain enough personal protective equipment (PPE) to protect themselves from infection while they provide life-saving services to patients. Mr. Dawit and his colleagues are no exception: They say there has been an acute shortage of protective equipment, including eye goggles, aprons, face masks and hand sanitizers.