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KIU International Desk: COVID-19 Could Increase Child Mortality Rate – UN Agencies


KIU, Western Campus – Child mortality of children under five years could increase as a result of COVID-19 induced disruptions to child and maternal health services in health systems all over the world, according to a United Nations report.

According to the UN, the number of global under-five deaths dropped to its lowest point on record in 2019 – down to 5.2 million, from 12.5 million in 1990 – but COVID-19 threatens to undo decades of hard-fought progress.

Services experiencing disruptions include health checkups, vaccinations, and prenatal and post-natal care. Reasons include resource constraints and a general uneasiness with using health services due to a fear of getting COVID-19, according to the UN agencies. 

Over the past 30 years, health services to prevent or treat causes of child death such as preterm, low birth weight, complications during birth, neonatal sepsis, pneumonia, diarrhoea and malaria, as well as vaccination, have played a large role in saving millions of lives, added the agencies.

The estimates, contained in the report Levels and Trends in Child Mortality: Report 2020, were issued by UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), UN World Health Organization (WHO), the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, and the World Bank Group. 

On April 17, Kampala International University Teaching Hospital warned the public including students of KIU not to be distracted by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and forget about the danger posed by other health conditions.

Picture credit: Women's eNews