Weekly News via Email
   Set as homepage | Add to favorites | Customer Service | Subscribe Now | Place an Ad | Contact Us | Sitemap Saturday, 02.24.2018
News Archive
Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa
 1  2  3  4  5
 6  7  8  9  10  11  12
 13  14  15  16  17  18  19
 20  21  22  23  24  25  26
 27  28  29  30  31
Online Extras
Site Services
Around Bend
Outdoor Fun
Travel Info
Shop Local

Members Of

Poll: Today's Live Poll
Email to a friend | Print this | PDF version | Comments (0 posted) 
  Blogger |   del.icio.us |   digg |   newsvine

May 11,2007
Precious lives
by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Every year more than 10 million children around the world - about 28,000 a day - die before they reach their fifth birthdays. Many could be saved by things that cost little or nothing: breast-feeding, immunization for measles, clean drinking water, mosquito nets.

What stands in the way? The lack of resources is a factor to be sure. But ignorance, war and politics reap their own grim harvest of precious young lives.

While many countries have made progress over the last 15 years in reducing death rates among children aged 5 and under, mortality rates have plateaued or risen in others, according to a report released this week by Save the Children, a U.S.-based international humanitarian organization. The report was based on data compiled from various sources, including the World Health Organization and UNICEF.

Twenty of the 60 developing countries that collectively accounted for 94 percent of child deaths either have made no progress over the last 15 years or have seen their child death rates worsen, according to the report. Among those sliding backward the most are Iraq, Botswana, Zimbabwe and Swaziland. Child death rates doubled in Iraq and Botswana over the last 15 years.

The vast majority of child deaths - 99 percent - take place in the developing world, with the highest rates found in Africa and South Asia. Just 10 countries account for the greatest number of them, including China, India, Angola and Democratic Republic of Congo. The highest mortality rates are in countries undergoing armed conflict such as Afghanistan, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Somalia.

However, even in developed countries such as the United States, death rates among some groups are unacceptably high. The United States tied for 26th place with Croatia, Estonia and Poland. Given our nation's wealth and resources, we should place at the top of the list. But that won't happen until impoverished mothers and infants, especially African-Americans, have better access to prenatal and pediatric health care.

The problem of child deaths may seem intractable, but experts say the solutions sometimes are simple. The leading causes of death among children under the age of 5 - newborn disorders, pneumonia and diarrhea - can be prevented or treated with low-cost interventions such as breast-feeding, birthing attendants, immunization for measles and treating diarrhea with oral rehydration therapy.

Warming and drying newborns immediately after birth, distributing insecticide-treated mosquito nets and providing clean drinking water also can save thousands of infants. Access to contraceptives and family planning allow mothers to space their babies at healthy intervals and avoid pregnancy when they are too young or too old to give birth safely.

Countries with limited financial resources such as Egypt, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Nepal and the Philippines have drastically reduced their childhood death rates by using some of those interventions. Among the developing countries, Egypt has made the most progress, with an impressive 68 percent decline in deaths over the last 15 years. Bangladesh has more than halved its child death rate.

The United States can help children around the world, but global social and health programs are mired in ideology. The Bush administration limits family planning funds to abstinence-only sex education.

Some things are beyond politics. Saving children's lives should be one of them.

Reprinted from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

1677 times read

Related news
The “Birth Dearth” is Highly Selective, Says E – The Environmental Magazine by E - The Environmental Magazine posted on Nov 02,2006

Flight spreads measles from San Diego to Hawaii by Cheryl Clark posted on Feb 15,2008

What it's worth by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch posted on Jan 18,2008

WHO foresees 1 billion smoking deaths by UPI posted on Jul 03,2007

Immunization Alert expands to include kids through age 14 by Bend Weekly News Sources posted on Jan 26,2007

Did you enjoy this article? Rating: 5.00Rating: 5.00Rating: 5.00Rating: 5.00Rating: 5.00 (total 22 votes)

Market Information
Breaking News
Most Popular
Most Commented
Featured Columnist
Horoscope Guide
Aquarius Aquarius Libra Libra
Aries Aries Pisces Pisces
Cancer Cancer Sagittarius Sagittarius
Capricorn Capricorn Scorpio Scorpio
Gemini Gemini Taurus Taurus
Leo Leo Virgo Virgo
Local Attractions
Bend Visitors & Convention Bureau
Bend Visitors & Convention Bureau

Mt. Bachelor Resort
Mt. Bachelor Resort

Les Schwab Ampitheater
Les Schwab Ampitheater

Deschutes County Fairgrounds
Deschutes County

Tower Theatre
Tower Theatre

The High Desert Museum


Deschutes County

  Web    BendWeekly.com
© 2006 Bend Weekly News
A .Com Endeavors, Inc. Company.
All Rights Reserved. Terms under
which this service is provided to you.
Please read our Privacy Policy. Contact us.
Bend Weekly News & Event Guide Online
   Save the Net
External sites open in new window,
not endorsed by BendWeekly.com
Subscribe in NewsGator Online
Add to Google Add to MSN Add to My AOL
What are RSS headlines?