October 23, 2009
The Institute for One World Health posts on the new report GWC collaborated on
The report by the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) and World Health Organization (WHO) with collaboration from Global Water Challenge shows the "urgent need to focus attention on diarrheal disease, a neglected illness responsible for the deaths of about 1.5 million children under 5 each year." Key findings from the report:
- More than 2 billion cases of diarrhea occur among children under 5 each year. More than 50 percent of these cases are in South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa, where incidences of diarrhea are more likely to be fatal.
- Only 39 percent of children in developing nations receive the recommended treatment for diarrheal disease.
- Pneumonia and diarrhea, the most common causes of death for children under 5, are responsible for an estimated 40 percent of deaths in this age group around the world each year.
- Significant reductions were made in diarrheal disease fatality rates in the 1970s and 1980s. But momentum has slowed and, today, diarrheal disease is the second leading killer of children under 5 worldwide.