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Child mortality in the world is “alarming”, warns the UN

Child mortality in the world is “alarming”, warns the UN

Five million children under the age of 5 died in 2021, a number “frightening“Despite the progress made since the beginning of the century, warned several agencies of the UN.

“The fact that 5 million minors have died in 2021 before reaching their fifth birthday is alarming given the availability of knowledge and actions to prevent these deaths”ensures the report prepared by various organizations, including Unicef, the World Health Organization or the World Bank.

Almost half of the deaths (2.3 million) occurred in the first month of existence, mainly due to complications during childbirth or that were premature. After the first month, infectious diseases, particularly pneumonia, diarrhea or malaria, are the main threats.

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The report denounces these deaths “intolerable” why are “widely avoidable”since they could have received better care during childbirth, better nutrition, vaccinations or better water quality.

But while the COVID-19 pandemic has hampered vaccination campaigns, two million minors have been deprived of essential vaccines in 2021 compared to 2020, and 6 million fewer than in 2019, recalls the report.

However, the agencies see positive signs. The under-five mortality rate has been reduced by 50% since 2000 and the rate of deaths in childbirth has also fallen by 35%.

In 2021, the number of stillborn babies was estimated at 1.9 million, according to a second report from the same agencies released Tuesday.

But “since 2010 there has been a clear slowdown in progress,” the agencies said in a statement. “In the absence of rapid measures to improve health services, international organizations forecast close to 59 million deaths of minors and young people before 2030, to which 16 million stillbirths will be added,” underline.

The report highlights the inequalities in the world, since there are minors who do not have the same chances of surviving from one region to another. Children in sub-Saharan Africa are at highest risk of dying before the age of five, followed by those in Southeast Asia.

“Political will and leadership are essential to ensure sustainable funding for basic health care, one of the most useful investments that countries and development partners can make”commented Juan Pablo Uribe, of the World Bank, in the statement.

Source: AFP

Source: Gestion

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