Monday, October 6, 2008

Shame on us

UNICEF released The State of the World's Children 2008.  

Overall much progress has been made with reducing infant mortality over the last few decades. Even in sub-Saharan Africa, with persistently high infant mortality rates some progress has been made. Painfully, South Africa is one of the few countries where things got worse between 1990 and 2006. 

South Africa was ranked 55th worse out of 189 countries on the under 5 mortality rate, a critical indicator of the well-being of children.  69 out of every 1000 children under 5 will probably die in South Africa-  much more then the 46 in Iraq (yes, I have double-checked) or the 22 in Occupied Palestinian Territory.  

What is worse is that South Africa slipped from a still unacceptably high probability of 60 out of every 1000 children in 1990, and what is worst of all is that much of this could have been prevented, especially given South Africa's relative high levels of wealth. See earlier post: Shocking statistics on maternal, newborn and child mortality in sub-Saharan Africa

There is something terribly missing in the South African recipe.  To care.  

Here's a simple way to start: value and reward all of those who are caretakers.

Image: WHO

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