Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Good news on Infant Mortality 

There are times when we can lose perspective on infant deaths. Historically, many cultures had to deal with a high level of infant deaths. Today the numbers have plummeted, worldwide. It would be nice if the number were zero but we may not reach the level of perfection. In the meantime, it's nice to know significant progress is being made.

In 2006 worldwide deaths for children under age 5 were 72 per 1000 live births. This was a significant decline from 93/1000 in 1990 and 184/1000 in 1960. This is a 60% decline over this time period. Changes in nutrition, malaria prevention, and immunizations are making a difference.

In the US, the under 5 mortality rate is about 8/1000.