In an Op-Ed on the NY Times' website today, missionary and doctor Sue Malkin writes about the staggering maternal mortality rates in Malawi. Malkin explains that part of the problem in getting care to expectant Malawian women is that they're not always empowered to make decisions about their own well-being, which leads to delays. Her point was echoed in a documentary that aired last night on PBS: Birth of a Surgeon follows Emilia Cubane, a young woman in Mozambique learning to become a surgical (as in C-sections) midwife. In the clip above, Emilia helps a laboring young woman who wants to be sterilized but doesn't have her husband's permission.

Saving Mothers, One At A Time [NY Times]

Birth Of A Surgeon [PBS]