The number of children under five years of age dying each year declined from more than 12 million in 1990 to 7.6 million in 2010, according to World Health Organization estimates on worldwide child mortality.
The vast majority of those deaths can be avoided. Saving the lives of the children will not cause a surge in population because people in underdeveloped countries who lose a child have more children. They also have larger families with the anticipation of losing some children to disease. There are smaller family sizes in countries with low infant and child mortality.
A child’s greatest risk of dying is during the first 28 days of life, accounting for 40% of all deaths among children under the age of 5. Half of newborn deaths occur during the first 24 hours and 75% during the first week of life, with preterm birth, severe infections and asphyxia being the main causes.
Some of the interventions include:
* Manage maternal anemia with iron;
* Prevent and manage post-partum hemorrhage;
* Immediate thermal care for newborns;
* Extra support for feeding small and preterm babies;
* Antibiotics for the treatment of pneumonia in children.