Conflict, climate change and Covid pose threat to health of women, children: PMNCH
The health of women, children and adolescents across the world faces a triple threat from conflict, climate change and Covid, the UN's PMNCH said, underlining that it's essential for citizens to be heard at the highest levels of government.
In a statement, leaders at the annual Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (PMNCH) Accountability Breakfast said data from WHO and UNICEF shows that in 2021 alone, 25 million children did not receive the basic vaccine against diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis (DTP) -- a marker for immunisation coverage in general.
This represents the largest sustained drop in rates of routine childhood vaccinations in a generation, potentially wiping out 30 years of progress, it said.
As many as 18 million children did not receive a single dose of DTP in 2021. The vast majority of these children live in low and middle-income countries, with India, Nigeria, Indonesia, Ethiopia and the Philippines recording the highest numbers, the statement said.
In 2022, 274 million people will need humanitarian assistance and protection, it said.
''This number is a significant increase from 235 million people a year ago, which was already the highest figure in decades,'' it added.
Over the past two decades, a concerted global effort has improved the lives of millions of women, children and adolescents, the statement said.
The proportion of girls being educated globally, for example, rose from 73 per cent in 1995 to 89 per cent by 2020; the number of child brides reduced by 15 per cent over the last decade, averting an estimated 25 million marriages; and there were 3 million fewer teen births per year since 2000.
''It is clearer now than ever that collaboration is key to improving accountability,'' said Helen Clark, PMNCH board chair and former prime minister of New Zealand.
''It is essential for citizens to be heard at the highest levels of government and leadership. Leaders need to understand what people want, and to play their part as champions in creating robust and responsive health systems and communities,'' she said.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)