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WHO, UNICEF Say 2.5 Million Newborns Died in 2017

WHO, UNICEF Say 2.5 Million Newborns Died in 2017

Saturday, 15 December, 2018 - 06:45
Photo of a premature baby in incubator
Cairo - Hazem Badr
A joint report by UNICEF and the World Health Organization (WHO) said that nearly 30 million children are born too small or become sick every year and need specialized care to survive.

The report named "Survive and Thrive: Transforming care for every small and sick newborn", warned from the increased fatalities among newborns, noting that in 2017, some 2.5 million child died, mostly from "preventable causes."

The report said that almost two-thirds of babies who die were born premature, and even if they survive, these babies face chronic diseases or developmental delays.

UNICEF works to fulfill this goal in partnership with the WHO, aiming at saving the life of 2.9 million children and mothers by 2030 and in 81 countries.

After identifying the problem, the report proposed many recommendations including the provision of an all-day all-night care for newborns.

Dr. Nabila Zakka, senior health consultant in UNICEF's "mother and newborns health" unit, said that "funding is needed to provide postpartum care, but providing this funding does not directly affect the prevention of the problem."

"The advice we always give is to have regular checks during pregnancy so that any problem can be detected and treated early, such as high blood pressure and urinary tract infections," Zakka told Asharq Al-Awsat.

Zakka stressed the importance of institutionalizing the problem and highlighted the role played by UNICEF and WHO, by raising awareness and advocating with governments to invest in neonatal care.

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