Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Save the Children

Unicef report says five newborn babies die every minute across the world or about 2.6 million every year, an ‘alarmingly high’ figure as 80% of these are preventable. Across the world, babies born into the poorest families are 40% more likely to die in the first month than those born into the richest.

The risk of dying as a newborn in the US is only slightly lower than the risk for babies in Sri Lanka and Ukraine. Babies born in Japan, Singapore and Iceland stand the best chance of survival, while those in Pakistan, Central African Republic and Afghanistan face the worst odds, according to the report. The risk of dying as a newborn, which is closely linked to income level of countries.

A million babies draw their last breath the same day they took their first. A further 2.6 million are stillborn worldwide, said the report. More than 80% of newborn deaths are due to prematurity, complications during birth, or infections such as pneumonia and sepsis. Such deaths can be prevented with access to trained midwives, clean water, disinfectants, breastfeeding within the first hour, skin-to-skin contact and good nutrition.

However, the report points out, while there are 218 doctors, nurses, and midwives in Norway per 10,000 people, that ratio falls to one per 10,000 in Somalia.

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