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India has the highest number of stillbirths

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New Delhi: After the explosive report on Delhi’s water being contaminated with the super bug, British medical journal ‘The Lancet’ has again highlighted India, this time in a survey on stillbirths.

The report says India has the highest number of stillbirths in the world. In 2009, more than six lakh children were born dead in India.

In fact, the study says India along with, Pakistan, Nigeria, China and Bangladesh account for half of all stillbirths worldwide.

“Typical complications of pregnancy, hypertension diabetes are still killing a lot of babies in low-income countries. Infections like malaria and syphilis still affecting many babies world over-third group,” says J. Frederik, Author, The Lancet.

In India, the stillbirth rates vary from 20 to 66 per 1,000 births in different states. If one compares the figure with countries like Finland and Singapore that have the lowest childbirth rates (2 per 1000), it is rather shocking as well as embarrassing.

Unflatteringly, the stillbirth rates have declined by barely one percent per year in the last 15 years – from 3 million in 1995 to 2.6 million in 2009.

Coming just weeks after the dismal picture on the child sex ratio painted by the census report, it’s yet another blot for India where prenatal care for lakhs of women is virtually non-existent, care that probably could have turned these statistics around.

In child death capital India 5,000 die every day

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By: Kavita Chowdhury

India has unofficially become the world’s child death capital, with a study claiming that over 5,000 children die in the country every day of “totally preventable causes”. According to the study, Child Health Now, by the NGO World Vision, India accounts for the highest number of child deaths (under five years of age) in the world at 1.95 million per year.

The study revealed that the majority of the deaths occur in the child’s first year itself. The causes included diarrhoea, pneumonia and neo- natal problems.> Simple life- saving measures such as oral rehydration solutions, basic vaccinations, breastfeeding and using mosquito nets could bring down the dismal number by more than two thirds, the report said.

Nigeria and the Democratic Republic of Congo follow India in the list. Together, the three nations account for 40 per cent of the total child deaths in the world. It was also found that the three countries allocated the least share of funding – less than three per cent – to maternal and child heath in the health sector allocation.

Reni Jacob, the advocacy director for World Vision India, said, “When hundreds die in a disaster, it is considered an emergency. But when 5,000 children die every day, it is not considered one. This is the biggest human rights and child rights violation of all times.” The fact that simple interventions can go a long way in preventing child deaths is evident from the disparities that exist within India itself. While states like Orissa have a high infant mortality rate of 10 per cent, in others like Kerala, the rate is just a little over 1 per cent. And that is primarily because of initiatives in child care and maternal health services.

Indeed, the report found that children in states like Uttar Pradesh and Bihar are more vulnerable than those in Kerala and Tamil Nadu. In Bihar, less than one- third infants are breast- fed and 50 per cent of children are stunted because of malnutrition. The state has a high infant mortality rate of 85 deaths per 1,000 live births.

World Vision has launched a five- year campaign in India to address the alarming situation. It has also urged the government to revamp the National Rural Health Mission and widen the focus of the Integrated Child Development Scheme to less than three- year- olds.

Reproduced From Mail Today. Copyright 2010. MTNPL. All rights reserved.

Written by rohitkumarsviews

March 25, 2010 at 8:07 am