Out of the 52 low-middle-income countries, India is the 12th worst nation where infants die within a month of their birth. In India, the number is 25.4 out of 1000 births.
Pakistan is the worst in the list, as 45.6 newborns out of 1000 births die in the country. The list has been released by United Nations Children’s Fund (Unicef) for the first time to check on newborn mortality.
List of Countries
The worst 10 countries in descending order are Pakistan (45.6), Central African Republic (42.3), Afghanistan (40), Somalia, Lesotho, Guinea-Bissau, South Sudan, Cote d’Ivoire, Mali and Chad. The top ten countries are Japan (.9), Iceland (1), Singapore (1.1), Finland, Estonia, Slovenia, Cyprus, Belarus, Republic of Korea and Norway/Luxembourg.
Unicef says newborn survival is closely linked to a country’s income level. “High-income countries have an average NMR of just 3. In comparison, low-income countries have an NMR of 27. This gap is significant. If every country brought its NMR to the high-income average, or below, by 2030, 16 million newborn lives could be saved,” the UN body says, as reported by The Times of India.
They further added that 80% of these cases occur because of premature deaths, an infection like sepsis, meningitis etc. “Babies born to mothers with no education face almost twice the risk of dying during the newborn period as compared to babies born to mothers with at least secondary education,” said an official.
The Logical Indian take
Indian healthcare has come a long way (timeline). But it also has a long way to go. This journey can be traversed successfully only if we treat this challenge as an opportunity.
Last year was filled with numerous reports of babies dying in hospitals not only due to poor infrastructure but lack of apathy from the government. India needs to include healthcare in its political rhetoric and make speedy overhauls in the system.
Read: World Health Day 2017: India’s Crumbling Healthcare System