The world made remarkable progress in child survival in the past few decades, and millions of children have better survival chances than in 1990—1 in 26 children died before reaching age 5 in 2017, compared to 1 in 11 in 1990. Moreover, progress in reducing child mortality has been accelerated in the 2000–2017 period compared with the 1990s, with the annual rate of reduction in the global under-five mortality rate increasing from 1.9 per cent in 1990–2000 to 4.0 per cent in 2000–2017. Despite the global progress in reducing child mortality over the past few decades, an estimated 5.4 million children under age 5 died in 2017—roughly half of those deaths occurred in sub-Saharan Africa. Mortality rates among older children and young adolescents (aged 5-14) also dropped by more than 50 per cent since 1990, yet almost one million children died in this age group in 2017 alone. The global burden of child deaths is a call for urgent and concerted action to further improve the survival chances of the world’s children. Credit: UNICEF.
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