Child deaths fell below 7 million in 2011 but 19,000 boys and girls under 5 still die daily


Associated Press

Washington Post

UNITED NATIONS — The number of children under the age of five who die annually fell below 7 million in 2011, but the U.N. children’s agency says about 19,000 boys and girls are still dying every day from largely preventable causes.

A report released Wednesday night by the United Nations Children’s Fund said that four-fifths of under-five deaths last year occurred in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia.

UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake said in the report that since these regions, especially sub-Saharan Africa, “will account for the bulk of the world’s births in the next years, we must give new impetus to the global momentum to reduce under-five deaths,”

He said lives can be saved with vaccines, adequate nutrition and basic medical and maternal care.

“The challenge is to make these available to every child,” he said.

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