There is a substantial decline in the child mortality rate in India between 1990 and 2019 according to a UN report. At the same time, India along with Nigeria even now accounted for almost one-third of deaths of under-five last year. This is according to a report by the UN that has warned that the pandemic of COVID-19 can undo the progress of decades in eliminating child deaths that can be prevented globally.
This report of 2020 stated that the deaths of under-five have dropped to the lowest point in 2019.
For more than 30 years, health services to treat or prevent causes of child death such as the low birth weight, preterm, and complications during birth, pneumonia, neonatal sepsis, malaria, diarrhea, and vaccinations have played an important role in saving lives.
The health care systems have faced major disruptions due to the on-going pandemic. This is threatening to undo the progress made in the past decade.
Here are some major causes of Child deaths globally:
- Almost every seventh child who died in the year 2017, died due to LRI (lower respiratory infection). This has been a major cause of child death for the past 3 decades. Pneumonia is one of the leading LRI, which is caused by bacterial infections primarily.
- When we talk about child-death, this is normally talking about children under the age of 5 years. You need to know that most of these children do not even reach their fifth birthday. A high risk of mortality is directly proportioned to how young the child is. As compared to the first four years, most children die in the very first year of their lives.
The children who die in the first year are termed as ‘neonatal deaths’. These neonatal deaths are in the first 27 days after they are born. One of the major determinates of mortality during this period are premature births. This means, being born before 37 weeks of gestation.
Premature children are at high risk of underdeveloped organ failures, birth injuries and also attracting infectious diseases.
- Every 10 children, who died in 2017, died of some kind of diarrheal disease. This could be cholera, rotavirus infection, and other diseases.
According to the WHO (World Health Organization), diarrhea is not only preventable but also treatable.
Diarrhea being the third leading cause of child-death is definitely inexcusable.
- Infant mortality is also due to congenital defects. These are abnormalities that are either genetic or physical. These are present at birth and include heart defects, neural defects Down syndrome and more.
To ensure there are fewer child-deaths it is important to understand the causes. You need to find out what is being down to further bring down the number of deaths in children.
With better health care and the different tools along with vaccines preventing child-deaths is not impossible.
Child-deaths is considered as a ‘disaster’ and it is important to work towards making this ‘Nil’.