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Mortality: Today only half as many children die worldwide as they did 20 years ago

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Mortality: Today only half as many children die worldwide as they did 20 years ago

Health historic low

Child mortality has declined significantly worldwide

Status: 14.03.2024 | Reading time: 2 minutes

In 2022, 4.9 million children worldwide died before their fifth birthday

Quelle: Getty Images/Phillippe Lissac

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Today, only half as many children die worldwide as they did 20 years ago, current data shows. Most deaths still occur in Africa and South Asia. Many of these lives could be saved with simple means.

According to the UN Children’s Fund Unicef, more children worldwide are surviving their first years of life than ever before. Since 2000, the mortality rate for children under five has fallen by 51 percent, the organization announced on Wednesday in Cologne and New York. In 2022, the number of children who died before their fifth birthday from preventable causes reached an all-time low of an estimated 4.9 million children. In 1990 there were still 12.5 million children.

According to the data, most of these deaths in 2022 occurred in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. They are mainly due to preventable causes or treatable diseases such as premature births, complications during birth, pneumonia, diarrhea and malaria.

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“Many lives could have been saved if the children had had better access to basic medical care,” Unicef ​​said in a statement. This included measures such as vaccinations, qualified health personnel and the diagnosis and treatment of childhood diseases.

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“It is crucial to improve access to quality health care for every woman and child, including in crisis situations and in remote areas,” World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus was quoted as saying in the statement. “Where a child is born should not determine whether they will live or die.”

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