Chi Mgbako is clinical associate professor in the Leitner Center for International Law and Justice at Fordham Law School in New York City. A graduate of Harvard Law School and Columbia University, she has conducted human rights fieldwork and advocacy in Ethiopia, Ghana, Liberia, Malawi, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, and Uganda. Her writings have appeared in the International Herald Tribune, the Huffington Post, and the Harvard Human Rights Journal.
Tarek Meguid, M.D., is the former head of the department of obstetrics and gynecology at Bwaila Hospital and Kamuzu Central Hospital in Lilongwe, Malawi. Previously, he worked as an obstetrician and gynecologist for ten years in a hospital in northern Namibia. His writings have appeared in The Lancet, the British Medical Journal, and Health and Human Rights: An International Journal.
The architectural design of two newly built public maternity hospitals in Malawi, which has one of the world’s highest rates of women dying in childbirth, seeks to respect the human rights of birthing women and has had a significant impact on Malawi’s maternal health care system. Ill-designed government-run maternal health centers litter many poor countries and contribute to unacceptably high maternal death rates. There’s a pressing global need to design public maternity units that uphold the dignity of socially disadvantaged women.