Use of the “Birth Cushion”: A Skills Building Session for Health Personnel Working with Populations that Prefer a Squatting Position for Delivery


Clementina Ilukol, Ministry of Health, Uganda
Grace Latigi, UNICEF
Neelam Bhardwaj, UNICEF

Women in many traditional societies prefer to deliver in a squatting position (rather than a lithotomy position), often at home with relatives and traditional birth attendants. UNICEF Uganda has implemented the use of an innovative “Birth Cushion” with women in a remote region of the country, where, in the past two years, over 2150 women have delivered on the Birth Cushion by preference and with no complications. The Birth Cushion enables skilled attendants to support a modified squatting position while also respecting cultural preferences. This skills building session will build the capacity of participants to use the Birth Cushion successfully even among populations in remote and hard-to-reach areas, thereby improving maternity care for most in need.