Breaking the Stereotype: The Benefits of Increasing Male Nurses and Midwives in Nigeria


More male nurses will definitely eliminate the myth that only women are meant to be nurses/midwives

Despite nursing and midwifery being two of the most important professions in the healthcare sector, the number of males in these fields remains alarmingly low in Nigeria. In fact, the midwifery profession has the lowest representation of males among all specialties in the country. This article aims to break the stereotypes that nursing and midwifery are female-oriented and examine the benefits of increasing male participation in these fields.


Studies show that gender diversity in healthcare professions is essential for providing better patient care. A report by the World Health Organization (WHO) suggests that male nurses bring a unique perspective to the profession and can play a significant role in promoting gender equality in healthcare. Furthermore, increasing the number of male nurses and midwives can help to eliminate the common misconception that these professions are meant only for women.

Despite the advantages of having more male nurses and midwives, the Nursing and Midwifery Council of Nigeria (NMNC) reported that many male applicants are denied admission to nursing and midwifery programs in the country. In response, the NMNC issued a circular on January 29th, 2021, encouraging schools and colleges of nursing to increase the admission numbers of male applicants and address gender-based discrimination in admissions.


Moreover, having more male nurses and midwives can help to boost the image of these professions and attract more qualified individuals to the field. A report by the International Council of Nurses (ICN) showed that increasing the representation of males in the nursing profession can positively impact the public's perception of nursing and promote gender equality in the workplace.


In conclusion, increasing the number of male nurses and midwives in Nigeria is essential for breaking stereotypes, promoting gender diversity in healthcare, and providing better patient care. The Nursing and Midwifery Council of Nigeria's recent circular highlights the importance of addressing gender-based discrimination in admissions and promoting gender balance in these professions. By embracing diversity in the nursing and midwifery fields, we can help to create a more inclusive and equitable healthcare system for all.



International Council of Nurses (ICN) (2008). Gender equality in nursing and midwifery education: ICN position statement. Geneva, Switzerland: ICN.

International Council of Nurses (ICN) (2010). ICN policy statement: Gender equality and the empowerment of women in nursing. Geneva, Switzerland: ICN.

World Health Organization (2017). Global strategy for women's, children's, and adolescents' health (2016-2030). Geneva, Switzerland: WHO.

World Health Organization (2010). Retooling for an ageing world: Building capacities for older people. Geneva, Switzerland: WHO.

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