Revista Panamericana de Salud Pública
On-line version ISSN 1680-5348
Print version ISSN 1020-4989
HSIEH, Evelyn J.; GARCIA, Patricia J. and LA ROSA ROCA, Sayda. Male midwives: preferred managers of sexually transmitted infections in men in developing countries?. Rev Panam Salud Publica [online]. 2008, vol.24, n.4, pp.271-275. ISSN 1680-5348. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1020-49892008001000007.
OBJECTIVES: To describe demographic and practice characteristics of male and female midwives in private practice (MIPPs) in 10 cities of Peru, and their role in the delivery of reproductive health care, specifically management of sexually transmitted infections (STIs). METHODS: As part of an intervention trial in 10 cities in the provinces of Peru designed to improve STI management, detailed information was collected regarding the number of midwives in each city working in various types of practices. A door-to-door survey of all medical offices and institutions in each city was conducted. Each MIPP encountered was asked to answer a questionnaire regarding demographics, training, practice type(s), number of STI cases seen per month, and average earnings per consultation. RESULTS: Of the 905 midwives surveyed, 442 reported having a private practice, either exclusively or concurrently with other clinical positions; 99.3% of these MIPPs reported managing STI cases. Andean cities had the highest density of MIPPs, followed by jungle and coastal cities, respectively. Jungle cities had the largest proportion of male MIPPs (35.5%). While both male and female MIPPs reported seeing male patients, male MIPPs saw a significantly greater number than their female counterparts. CONCLUSIONS: In areas of Peru where physicians are scarce, MIPPs provide needed reproductive health services, including STI management. Male MIPPs in particular appear to serve as health care providers for male patients with STIs. This trend, which may exist in other developing countries with similar healthcare workforce demographics, highlights the need for new areas of training and health services research.
Keywords : Midwives; private practice; health manpower; sexually transmitted diseases; Peru.