The Millennium Development Goals (MDG) of the United Nations and its partners consist of eight goals. Goal number four, Reduce Child Mortality Rates by 2015, has seen some success in the past decade. Children in impoverished countries die every year from things that can easily be prevented by means of vaccination, having mosquito nets, being properly nourished or receiving visits from health care professionals, to name just a few.
For instance, Cambodia has created support groups for breastfeeding mothers. These support groups teach women the importance of exclusive and immediate breastfeeding when the infant is born. Such groups also teach mothers the negative effects that rise from giving infants contaminated water. Having access to these groups and teaching practices have dramatically reduced child mortality rates in the region. Breastfeeding is one of the most cost effective things women from poverty stricken countries can do to keep babies nourished through infancy. Cost effective programs like ones in Cambodia have proven effective at reducing child mortality.
In Egypt, 97% of infants and children are immunized against six deadly diseases, which through diarrhea and other sicknesses, cause 40% of deaths among children. Unfortunately, malnutrition is still a steady problem and children continue to die.
In the last decade malaria mortality rates have seen a 25% reduction globally. However, even with this reduction a child dies every minute from the disease. The distribution and aid for insecticidal mosquito nets is a must in reducing child mortality.
Children with access to health care professionals are usually given a better chance at survival. As an example, Ethiopia has reduced its child mortality rate with this practice.
There are several successes to show the efforts of MDGs. However, there is still a long way to go in order to reach the 2015 deadline. In 2012, alone, 6.6 million children died from these preventable illnesses and many others. Furthermore, most of these children came from developing countries. Such numbers of deaths should not be acceptable, instead, zero should to be the number attached to child mortality. Aid from many wealthy governments will go a long way in ending the suffering that these 6 million children partake in every year across the globe.
– Amy Robinson