World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


1.16 Million Newborns Die Each Year - Africa

1.16 Million Newborns In Sub-Saharan Africa Die Each Year – UN Report

New York, Nov 23 2006 4:00AM

Each year at least 1.16 million newborns die in sub-Saharan Africa within the first 28 days of life, making the region the world’s most dangerous to be born in, yet more than two thirds of these infants could be saved with low cost, low tech action, according to a United Nations-backed report released today.

“It would cost an additional $1.39 per capita per year to provide 90 per cent of women and babies in sub-Saharan Africa with all the essential heath packages,” according to the study, Opportunities for Africa’s newborns, produced by the Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (PMNCH). Its proposals include immunizing wo῭en against tetanus, providing skilled attendants at birth and treating newborn infections promptly.

Amid the grim statistics there is some good news: six low-income countries – Burkina Faso, Eritrea, Madagascar, Malawi, Uganda and Tanzania, have made significant progress in reducing these deaths.

“Good news does come out of Africa,” said Joy Lawn, co-editor of the report, who works in Africa for Saving Newborn Lives/Save the Children-US, one of the partners in PMNCH, which includes the UN World Health Organization (WHO) and more than 80 other organizations and foundations in developing and donor countries.

“Whilst the survival of the African child has shown almost no improvement since the 1980s, the fact that during 2006 several large African countries have reported a dramatic reduction in the risk of child deaths gives us new hope of more rapid progress to save Africa’s children,” she added.

Up to half a million African babies die on the day they are born, most at home and uncounted. Liberia has the world’s highest newborn mortality rate at 66 deaths per 1,000 births compared to less than 2 deaths per 1,000 births in Japan and 6 deaths per 1,000 births in Latvia.

Half of Africa’s 1.16 million newborn deaths occur in just five countries – Nigeria, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Ethiopia, Tanzania and Uganda. Nigeria alone has over 255,000 newborn deaths each year.

On any given day in sub-Saharan Africa, according to the report, 3,100 newborns die, another 2,400 are stillborn, 9,600 others die after their first month and before their fifth birthday, and 700 women succumb to pregnancy-related causes.

The report’s other low-cost life-saving recommendations include educating mothers about hygiene, warmth and breastfeeding, delaying the first pregnancy until after 18, spacing pregnancies at least 24 months apart, and treating malaria during pregnancy and HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases especially among adolescent girls.

“Saving these lives would take only an estimated $1.39 per capita – or $1 billion per year,” WHO said in a news release. “This cost would benefit others, in particular the 1 million stillborns and 250,000 mothers who also die each year.”

The report called on African countries to produce a plan of action and mobilize internal resources, and on international donors to leverage resources to meet the additional needs identified by these countries.
“The health of newborn babies has fallen between the cracks – Africa’s un-named, and uncounted, lost children,” PMNCH Director Francisco Songane said. “We must count newborn deaths and make them count, instead of accepting these deaths as inevitable.

“The progress of these six African countries demonstrates that even the world’s poorest countries can look after their newborns, their most vulnerable citizens. They have shown the way – we must seize the opportunity,” he added.


Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

At The UN: Paris Climate Agreement Moves Closer To Entry Into Force

The Paris Agreement on climate change moved closer toward entering into force in 2016 as 31 more countries joined the agreement today at a special event hosted by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. More>>

ALSO:

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>

ALSO:

Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Bidding Bye Bye To Boris

Boris Johnson’s exit from the contest for Conservative Party leadership supports the conspiracy theory that he never really expected the “Leave” option to win the referendum – and he has no intention now of picking up the poisoned chalice that managing the outcome will entail... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news