This month the Pacific Community (SPC) will highlight the invaluable contribution of Pacific women in health care. Globally, women make up 80% of the health workforce and in the Pacific 75% of women represent the nursing workforce. This year has been challenging for everyone working in health care as COVID-19 took precedence and placed a burden on health facilities globally.
SPC’s Public Health Division (PHD) works extensively in the region supporting the health and future of Pacific islanders. PHD remains committed to support capacity development that will contribute towards expanding the number of women in the medical field. PHD staff make up reflects this commitment as over 60% of the division’s staff are women.
The Director for SPC’s Public Health Division Dr Paula Vivili said that this campaign will also celebrate the Year of Nurses and Midwives. “We will share stories and profiles of nurses from across the region, highlighting the challenges frontline nurses are facing and reflect on the outcomes of the inaugural Pacific Heads of Nurses meeting which convened earlier this year. The campaign will end with a breast cancer awareness and screening activity, in line with the theme of the month Pinktober”.
In addition to this, the campaign will feature some of the inspiring women that work in PHD, including inspirational figures such as Dr Salanieta Saketa who will describe her journey through the field of healthcare and the challenges she overcame to reach her goals. She will highlight the prominent roles she served during her carrier so far, such as being the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Health and Medical Services in Fiji before serving her current role as senior epidemiologist at PHD, giving perspectives on working at a national and regional level.
Dr. Vivili notes, “I hope that this campaign will not only put a spotlight on the incredible work being done by women across the region, but also inspire and motivate new generations to consider becoming a part of the health care workforce.”
Stay tuned for exclusive content on women in healthcare from across the Pacific that will be published on SPC’s social media accounts for the next 10 days.