Matthews Mathai is an expert in global maternal and perinatal health. He joined the Centre for Maternal and Newborn Health after several years of clinical, teaching, research and programme experience. Until recently, as Coordinator of the Epidemiology, Monitoring and Evaluation Team in WHO's Department of Maternal, Newborn, Child and Adolescent Health, he led the implementation of Maternal Death Surveillance and Response (MDSR) and development of the WHO Stillbirth and Neonatal Death review tool. He co-chaired the Every Newborn Action Plan Metrics Working Group. His earlier work in Making Pregnancy Safer included the development, update and implementation of WHO's Integrated Management of Pregnancy and Childbirth (IMPAC) guidelines and tools.
As Professor of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at the Christian Medical College, Vellore, India until 2005, he established the first competency based training centre in India for emergency obstetric care. He has worked in many countries in Asia and the Pacific, training health workers in reproductive health, particularly in maternal and perinatal care. Between 1996 and 1997, he established and directed the Regional Training and Research Centre in Reproductive Health at the Fiji School of Medicine, Suva, Fiji.
Professor Mathai had his basic medical training and postgraduate training in obstetrics and gynaecology at the Christian Medical College, Vellore, followed by further training at the University of Liverpool in feto-maternal medicine. He was awarded PhD in International Health by the Karolinska Institute, Stockholm and is a Fellow ad eundem of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists.