The Pumwani Maternity Hospital has been providing sexual and reproductive health services to the poor communities of eastern Nairobi since 1926. With an average of 80 mothers giving birth and 200 clients visiting daily for antenatal, family planning, and comprehensive care, the Pumwani Maternity Hospital is consistently busy, aiming to provide the highest quality of care to those who would not be able to pay for services otherwise.
George Nyadimo is the head of nursing at Pumwani Maternity Hospital, where he supervises more than 200 nurses. Through the Midwifery Association of Kenya, George attended the Leadership, Management, and Governance (LMG) for Midwifery Managers Course, a five day workshop designed by the USAID-funded LMG Project that focuses on a variety of skills including: assertive communication, advocacy, coaching and mentoring, database management, change management, and strategic problem solving.
Before he completed the course, communication among George’s staff was difficult and clients sometimes complained because they were not satisfied with the hospital’s services. George started implementing some of the leadership, management, and governance practices he learned in the course, and he has started to see a huge transformation. He says: “This [course] has impacted positively in my work as the nursing offer in charge and I’m able to work with the workers harmoniously, without frictions… The number of clients that we see in labor ward doubled and it has continued to rise. Our clients are also reporting cases of satisfaction, with the reports that services have actually improved in our facility… The staff have become responsive to the needs of the clients and this has actually helped us to intervene in good time.”
As a manager, George has taken numerous managerial courses; however, he said the LMG for Midwifery Managers Course was different and offered much more: “After LMG I came to realize the importance of matching the three [topics] together, Leadership, Management, and Governance, because I realized this forms the foundation of managing a health facility.”
The LMG for Midwifery Managers Course taught George the importance of communication, self-respect, and being participatory, and it has helped him work better with his team. George now realizes that each nurse he manages has different issues, strengths, and challenges, but he says that, “Using the skills and knowledge acquired through LMG, I’m in a position to handle the issues.”
George saw that by changing his behaviors in the workplace and implementing what he learned in the course services improved almost instantly, not only from a managerial perspective, but for all of his staff. George led his workers to understand the importance of teamwork and reflecting on challenges to find better ways to solve them. Unlike before, he says that his team has expressed appreciation for this newfound collaboration: “In case of problems or challenges, we consult and we agree.”
George believes that all healthcare managers, irrespective of their affiliations, should take the LMG for Midwifery Managers Course, because management is not a siloed task, it takes an integrated approach for a complete transformation from the top down to the the facility level and service delivery. As George put it, “LMG is the way to achieve success in healthcare, it is a critical pathway to deliver healthcare to the people.”