In 2015, 5.9 million babies and toddlers under 5 died from preventable causes. In fact, the majority of children are still dying from disease, lack of nutrition, and complications at birth.

Facts about Children’s Health

  • Each year, 5.9 million children die before their fifth birthdays, many in their first month of life and most from preventable and treatable causes. (UNICEF 2015)
  • The top killers are pneumonia, diarrhea, malaria, and neonatal causes such as birth complications and infections. Malnutrition also underlies at least a third of these deaths. (WHO)
  • Children in the poorest households are 1.9 times as likely to die before they reach their 5th birthday. (UNICEF, 2015)
  • Of all childhood deaths, 99% occur in low income and middle-income countries, with half in sub-Saharan Africa and 33% in southern Asia. (CDC)
  • About 350,000 mothers die in or shortly after childbirth each year, leaving their children up to 10 times more likely to die before age five. (WHO)
  • Millions more children can be saved with low-cost, effective interventions like bed nets to prevent malaria; basic childhood immunizations; getting proper nutrients; clean drinking water and handwashing with soap to avoid diarrhea, and oral rehydration therapy to treat it.

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