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South Asia Makes Little Progress In Meeting Maternal, Child Mortality MDGs, U.N. Report Says

“South Asian nations are making the least progress in the Asia-Pacific region on meeting key development goals, which they pledged to achieve by 2015,” Bindu Lohani, vice president for sustainable development at the Asian Development Bank (ADB), said on Friday at the launch of a U.N. progress report on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), Reuters reports (Bhalla, 2/19). The Asia-Pacific region already has reached the MDG of halving the incidence of poverty, “but still has high levels of hunger as well as child and maternal mortality,” the report said, according to Asian Scientist (2/21).

“At the present rate of progress, the region as a whole is unlikely to meet MDGs related to eradicating hunger, reducing child mortality and improving maternal health, among others, the report warns,” the U.N. News Centre writes. “The report notes that many countries can speed up progress with just a little effort” and “outlines an eight-point agenda to fast-track progress towards the health MDGs that includes establishing an equitable, accessible, responsive and integrated primary health care system as well as ensuring preventive and curative mother and child health services,” the news service notes (2/17).