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Gapcast #11 -Reducing Child Mortality

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This is the world in 1959 The size of this bubble represents the number of children born in the world It was 100 million children born in 1959 On this axis here we can see the death among these children Child mortality was 150 deaths per 1000 children born This axis goes from 20 deaths per 1000 to 500 deaths per 1000 This axis down here shows the income per person It was 3000 dollars per year in 1959 The axis goes from 500 dollars all the way to 30 000 dollars But the world was obviously very unequal I will show this by splitting the world bubble into country bubbles Look Each bubble is a country The size is the number of births I will zoom up to show you what has changed since The blue ones here are the developing countries The brown ones here are the industrialized countries The industrialized countries had higher income and lower child mortality But what has changed? I will start the world and you can see Year by year, how the child mortality is falling It��s falling, it��s going down Child mortality is getting lower Income is increasing The former developing countries are coming into the circle here which represents the industrialized countries The big one there is China, coming all the way down You have a new pattern in the world The high income countries had a very high income and very low child mortality But also some developing countries have reached all the way down here what I should say ��former developing countries�� Most countries in the world are in the middle position Some had very high child mortality and low income Now how fast did that change take place? Millennium Development Goal (MDG) NO. 4 is specified by the UN as a lowering of child mortality with two-thirds in 25 years That is one generation But a modern way to measure that is to measure Average Annual Rate of Reduction This is a way to measure child mortality in the same way as we measure economic growth in percent change per year The aim is to change child mortality by lowering with 4.3% More than 4%, we could say Now let me give you an example. Norway is a very successful country with very high income and very low child mortality I will now take Norway backwards into history Look, Norway flies back within history and it lands in the year 1900 Norway had a high child mortality �C 140 children dying per 1000 born It was up here Among countries that have the highest child mortality Now I will make a very interesting comparison I will compare Norway with Bangladesh I have chosen 1990, the year when we started to measure MDG goal Then Bangladesh had 140 children dying, exactly the same as Norway had in 1900 That was 90 years difference I want to know which country will lower the child mortality faster Norway more than 100 years ago, or Bangladesh 16 years ago? Here we go! Bangladesh is reducing in the same speed as Norway But now Bangladesh is going faster When we reach 2006, Bangladesh reduced with 4.7% and achieved the MDG goal rate and they were faster than Norway Not to be surprised, actually Because now they have vaccines, antibiotics We know more about the importance of breast feeding So it should be able to reduce faster, and it did But I will give Norway one more chance I will compare Norway 1916 with Egypt 1990 The year when MDG goal measurement started Egypt then had 91 children dying per 1000 Here we start You can see how they are going down Egypt is becoming faster and faster in the speed They are very successful in reduction, actually 5.5% much faster than MDG goal rates But Norway in the past could not follow The final chance for Norway we will compare Norway 1932 Norway had the same child mortality as Brazil had in 1990 Here we go Brazil is fast Norway goes into the 2nd World War That was a difficult period They haven��t had any chance to go as fast in that period as Brazil did in the last 16 years Brazil reaches amazingly 6.3% much faster than MDG goal rate This tells us in practice, MDG goal can be achieved! Now let��s look how Norway will continue Norway was indeed in history very successful But it reached down to its present position by a reduction of 3.3% per year About the other countries of the world These green ones, they have achieved MDG goal exactly as Bangladesh, Egypt and Brazil or they are very well on the way to achieve that because we will continue to measure after 2006 The yellow ones here The yellow ones are countries which have gone in Norway��s speed They have reduced child mortality but not really as fast as the target set by UN 2, 3%, or 4% perhaps Our concerns are the red countries Look, the red countries up here have high child mortality and almost no reduction They reduced very little or not at all The main concern for me is that these countries have the lowest income and highest child mortality It means that the country with the highest child mortality are those which also have the slowest reduction That is a really serious concern We must make vaccines and treatment reach those in greatest need Now there is a good news Look at this country Tanzania According to the measurement from 1990 It has insufficient reduction But I will show you a more detailed study This is published in the Lancet The main medical journal in April this year It shows on this axis the years from 1990 (to 2005) Here it shows child mortality Tanzania indeed during the first 9 years of MDG goal measurement It did not reduce at all, it was a red country But what has happened is this Now they have a faster reduction The researchers that did this careful study Tanzanian researchers together with international researchers They were careful, they said, this was a short period, and there is an uncertainty range These little lines show the uncertainty range But they said, it��s highly probable, because at the same time, certain action were taken. We have marked them here. Tanzanian government doubled the health budget Tanzania has an economic growth now The AID organisation provided vaccines and immunizations through an international coordinated effort And bed nets were provided that protects the children against malaria death So we have good reasons to believe that Tanzania now actually is a country on track to MDG goal After a period of 9 years no reduction. Good news! I have a final graph The total number of children who die in the world We actually know this estimate fairly well We know that in 1970 There was more than 15 million children dying This has declined so that today it is less than 10 million children dying If we continue as we do today It will continue to decrease But too slow, I think, and many who are like me have been able to study this We are eager that we move faster Because what can be done with what we have in our hands today is this If we add bed nets to everyone that needs it we will save 1 million children If we add new vaccines which now exists for protection of children against pneumonia, infection in the lung we will save 2 million children If we provide services for pregnant women and new-born children we will save another 2 million We can save 5 million children every year within 10 years That is achieving MDG goal It is within our power to replace funerals for children with happy children!

Video Details

Duration: 9 minutes and 59 seconds
Country: Sweden
Language: English
Producer: Gapminder
Director: Gapminder
Views: 160
Posted by: gapminder on Nov 7, 2008

Nearly 10 million children under five die every year. Almost 90% of all child deaths are attributable to just six conditions: neonatal causes, pneumonia, diarrhoea, malaria, measles, and HIV/AIDS.

The aim (Millenium Development Goal 4) is to cut child mortality by two thirds by 2015. How can this be achieved? Which countries make sufficient progress? And with which rate did a country like Norway reduce its child mortality the last 100 years? Watch Gapcast #11 to understand the background and the current status of a Millenium Development Goal.

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