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Maternal, Newborn and Child Health

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16 Countries Pledge To Reduce Maternal, Newborn, Child Mortality

Sixteen countries have announced new commitments aimed at significantly reducing maternal, newborn and child mortality, by “focus[ing] on measures proven effective in preventing deaths, such as increased contraceptive use, attended childbirth, improved access to emergency obstetric care, prevention of mother to child transmission of HIV, and childhood immunizations,” ANI/Sify News reports (5/20).

Haiti Presents Plan To Immunize 90 Percent Of Newborns

Haiti has a plan to vaccinate 90 percent of newborns by 2015, according to the Pan American Health Organization, but “[w]hether the plan works will depend on Haiti’s ability to reverse decades of incompetent government and bad coordination among aid groups,” as well as whether there will be funding, the New York Times reports.

Bill Gates Calls For Greater Immunization Efforts In World Health Assembly Address

Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, on Tuesday called for a “Decade of Vaccines” in a keynote address at the World Health Assembly in Geneva, saying strengthening immunization programs against infectious diseases worldwide could save 10 million lives by 2020, Reuters reports. He said countries should aim for 90 percent immunization coverage against diseases such as polio, meningitis and pneumonia and said pharmaceutical companies should work to make existing and new vaccines affordable to developing countries, according to the news agency (Nebehay, 5/17).

WHO Releases Annual World Health Statistics Report

The WHO on Friday released its annual World Health Statistics report, which includes data on more than 100 indicators – such as life expectancy, mother and child mortality, disease prevalence and health expenditures – from the agency’s 193 member states, the Associated Press reports (5/14).