Bangladesh’s child mortality rate drops in 25 years

Dhaka, Sep 10 (IANS) Bangladesh’s child mortality rate has dropped by 73 percent in the last 25 years, an official report said.

A UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) report said the under-five mortality rate in Bangladesh in 1990 was 144 per 1,000, bdnews24 reported.

The Levels and Trends in the Child Mortality Report 2015 also showed that the child mortality rates across the world have halved, 53 percent, over the same time-frame.

The number of under-five deaths has dropped to below 6 million for the first time this year, a figure that is in stark contrast to the 12.7 million deaths in 1990.

Unicef Deputy Executive Director Geeta Rao Gupta said the development was a great achievement.

“But the far too large number of children still dying from preventable causes before their fifth birthday – and indeed within their first month of life – should impel us to redouble our efforts to do what we know needs to be done.”

The achievement, however, has showed that a lot has to be done to reach the Millennium Development Goal of a two-thirds reduction between 1990 and 2015.

According to the UN, Bangladesh has already achieved the target of reducing under-five mortality rates.

The mortality rate was 46 per 1,000 last year, while the target was 48 for 2015.

Sixty-two of the 162 countries, whose data were evaluated to make the report, have also reached the goal.

However, the report indicates that 16,000 children under five are still dying every day.

A massive 45 percent of under-five deaths occur in the neonatal period – the first 28 days of life, the report pointed out, terming prematurity, pneumonia, complications during labour and delivery, diarrhoea, sepsis, and malaria as leading causes.

Nearly half of all under-five deaths are associated with malnutrition.

The report highlights that a child’s chance of survival still depends vastly on where he or she is born.

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