Kenya lost more than 100,000 children newborns to preventable causes in 2020, a new study has revealed.
According to the report by the United Nations Children’s Fund (Unicef), the total deaths recorded comprised; 62,000 under five years, 46,000 infants, and 31,000 newborns.
Globally, the report records that more than 5 million children died before turning 5 in 2020 alone. This includes e 2.4 million newborns, along with 2.2 million children and youth aged 5 to 24 years – 43 percent of whom are adolescents.
The report further maintains that the staggering deaths could have been prevented.
Subsaharan Africa Infant Mortality Rates
Children in sub-Saharan Africa and Southern Asia continue to face the highest risk of death and to bear the brunt of the child mortality burden.
“Children are still facing wildly divergent chances of leading a healthy life simply based on where they are born and the economic circumstances they are born into,” the report says.
The child mortality rate in sub-Saharan Africa was 14 times higher (74 (68–86) deaths per 1,000 live births), than the risk for children in Europe and Northern America and 19 times higher than the region of Australia and New Zealand.
Communicable and Infectious Diseases Leading Causes of Preventable Deaths of Children
Globally, premature birth and birth complications (birth asphyxia/trauma), pneumonia, diarrhea, and malaria remain the leading causes of preventable deaths of children under 5 years old.
The report warns that with the current trend, countries are at risk of missing the SDG target for neonatal mortality, which will see more than 43 million children younger than 5 die before 2030, half of them newborns.
“If countries at risk of missing the SDG target on under-five mortality accelerated progress to achieve it by 2030, 8 million children’s lives would be saved.” Unicef