As the ICM Board members representing the Asia-Pacific region we have much pleasure in welcoming midwives to the ICM Asia-Pacific regional conference to be held in Yokohama, Japan, in July 2015. The theme for the conference "Midwifery Care for Every Mother and their Newborn" is highly appropriate given the on-going evidence that midwives save lives and that midwives are the most effective health professional for women experiencing a low risk pregnancy.
Our region is large and diverse. Countries, cultures, maternity systems and outcomes for women and babies vary enormously. In some countries midwives are a well established and respected part of the maternity service yet in other countries midwifery is only just establishing. While this range of diversity can create challenges it can also provide great opportunities to learn from each other. There are many significant midwife-led initiatives taking place within the region which will inspire us all to help overcome the challenges many of us face.
The organizing committee representing the Japanese Midwives Association, the Japan Academy of Midwifery and the Japanese Nursing Association have been working collaboratively to ensure the conference will provide an abundance of learning opportunities as well as fun social events.
We urge you to support our regional conference by either submitting abstracts or simply attending the conference to experience professional growth and to enjoy Japanese hospitality from the three associations representing midwives in Japan.