Working as CEO and Deputy Director General of the Benghazi Medical Center, one of Libya’s two biggest tertiary healthcare centers, for the last four years, Dr. Laila Bugaighis is one of a few women executive leaders working in the public healthcare sector in Libya. Her achievements have led to her official nomination to minister of health more than once.
She grew up between Libya and Austria, spent a gap year studying political economics in the USA before pursing her medical education in Libya. In 2001 Dr. Bugaighis went on to train and finish her postgraduate studies in the UK to become a member of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of London. She returned to Libya in 2006 and started working as consultant and Senior Lecturer at the University of Benghazi Medical School. She started her advocacy for reform, ending corruption, and saving women from violence and death. In 2010 she presented results of a four-year Audit, which looked into the failure of reducing maternal deaths in Libya, at an International British Conference, and pushed for the recommendations for reducing maternal mortality in Libya.
Dr. Bugaighis is a member of the Scientific Committee for Reproductive Health of Libya, and a member of the Libyan-EU initiative for healthcare systems reform. In 2012 she reached out to the Global Health arm of Harvard and MGH to link healthcare centers and improve standards and quality in her country. In March 2011 she founded the National Protection Against Violence Committee, which aimed to implement a comprehensive program for gender-based violence in Libya. The Committee, which she chaired, was later incorporated into the Ministry of Health. She also chaired the violence cluster of the United Nations Mission in Libya in 2011, and was invited by the University of Toronto Law School in February 2013 to join a panel of experts on Gender Based Violence in Libya and Syria.
She is co-founder of Al Tawafuk Al Watani, a political NGO working to raise awareness.