Women make up about 70 percent of the health sector workforce in the country and the Ministry of Health is working to ensure they are supported.
Minister for Health, Doctor Ifereimi Waqainabete says previously the Ministry was dominated by male health workers, but now it’s impressive to see women taking up more roles.
He says they want to make health facilities more women, mother and baby friendly.
Closing the Breastfeeding Week at the Savusavu Hospital, Dr Waqainabete says while they advocate for health, the Ministry will also support women’s health and well-being in the workplace.
“I was also talking about how we can be able to work together to ensure that the majority of our staff that are women can be able to come and work with the Ministry of Health, have children, have a family, enjoy and move in the career path that we have within the Ministry of Health.”
Dr Waqainabete adds, they will also look at mechanisms which will help women to exclusively breastfeed their babies.
I was glad that up in Taveuni, they showed me the cribs that they were making for anyone who wants to bring their children in, their babies so that they can breastfeed. Maybe that is something that you want to do here in Savusavu. It’s something to think of as government has set aside $2.2 million works here in Savusavu.
Dr Waqainabete reiterated the importance of exclusive breastfeeding in the first six months of a child’s life.
Fiji’s current exclusive breastfeeding rate stands at 40 percent.