At the UN Summit in 2000, world leaders set an ambitious target to reduce child mortality by 2015, one of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). These goals were created to address the staggering and preventable child deaths in the world.
Accelerating progress on reducing child mortality can be achieved through simple and cost-effective interventions. The annual number of deaths among children under five years of age fell from an estimated 9.6 million in 2000 to 7.6 million in 20101 as a result of immunization combined with other health care and development interventions—including improved access to clean water and sanitation and nutrition.
Nonetheless, in 2012 alone, more than 6.6 million children under the age of 5 globally died from preventable diseases such as pneumonia, diarrhoea, malaria, HIV and measles.2
- 6.6 million children under the age of five die each year due to preventable illness and disease.
- Children in sub-Saharan Africa are about over 16 times more likely to die before the age of five than children in developed regions.3
- Pneumonia is the leading killer of children under five with 3,000 deaths of children under 5 years every day in 2012.2
- 1/5 of the world’s children were not fully immunised in 2010.4
- Polio is now endemic in only 3 countries.