Mediatrice Mukamazimpaka vows to remain a midwife for as long as she can. With 25 years of experience, Mukamazimpaka says through her profession, she has nurtured her passion for safe childbirth.
Mukamazimpaka works at La Croix Du Sud Hospital, in Kigali.Wearing her white hospital gown, the 47-year-old midwife cannot wait for her next task! Blame her passion for delivering babies, she says her youngest daughter looks up to her and wants to become a midwife when she grows up.
Mukamazimpaka stands to differ from the community’s definition of her legacy as a midwife.
“It’s important that all women get access to safe motherhood,” she says.
Nothing stops her Thank goodness her three sons and two daughters are supportive of her profession. Not even her fiancée comes between Mukamazimpaka and her profession.
“Will you marry me along with my job,” was the first question Mazimpaka asked her Fiancée when he proposed.
Mukamazimpaka was trained in midwifery from the Democratic Republic of Congo where she was born.
She worked as an intern at a health centre and that is when she realised that there were thousands of helpless pregnant women, yet midwives were in shortage.
Practicing childbirth made Mukamazimpaka master her skill.
She then changed from being a nursing-aid to a midwife who has led hundreds of women through safe delivery.
“I am now used to monitoring a baby’s movement, when it will be born and if the birth will be normal. Basically, experience has taught me everything,” she says.
Together with her team, she facilitates at least eight births a day. She counts it an achievement whenever a mother delivers with her help.
Each day, Mukamazimpaka cannot wait for her shift, regardless of how her family perceives it.
“My oldest daughter keeps complaining about my lack of time. She wishes I had a less demanding office job,” she says.
Child and maternal mortality
“It’s important that women go for testing at least four times during pregnancy,” she advises.
Mukamazimpaka blames child deaths on the local herbs that pregnant women consume.
“These herbs are falsely attributed for quickening labour yet they weaken the baby, causing its death,” she said. “Cases of pregnant women consuming both local Kinyarwanda herbs with hospital medicine endanger safe childbirth.”
Apart from the above challenges, Mukamazimpaka is more than satisfied with her work.
She emphasizes that midwifery as a profession is much needed in developing countries.
“More midwives are needed in Rwanda. Birth is a field that leaves out no one. It’s important that midwives are at least a quarter of the number of expecting mothers,” she explains.
“Midwifery is like a school, where I can’t wait to learn the next lesson,” she says.