Much as efforts are been geared towards a healthier society for all, UNICEF in a handbook extracted from Faith For Life have decried that, Nigeria still have one of the highest number of newborn deaths in Africa.
Making the presentation yesterday in a 2 day workshop on Media Engagement On Dissemination of “Facts For Life” messages, UNICEF resource person, Mrs Tamani Yusuf added that, if Nigeria is desirous of meeting the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), then more attention should be given to newborns.
“Nigeria has one of the highest numbers of newborn deaths in Africa, with a neonatal mortality rate of 37 per 1, 000 live births and approximately 250, 000 deaths occurring every year. One in every 15 babies born in Nigeria will die before their first birthday and about one in eight before their fight birthday”
While insisting that over 80 percent of the under five deaths in Nigeria are from preventable causes, Mrs Tamani added that expectant and nursing mothers as well as caregivers should be encouraged to embrace correct practices that could guarantee sound health.
Quoting the “Fact for Life” messages, Tamani added that some of the factors contributing to deterioration of child health indicators include, “Malnutrition, a high incidence of diseases, inappropriate household caring practices, poor environmental and living conditions and the HIV and AIDS pandemic.
Amongst the correct practices to be promoted to guarantee health for newborn babies, Tamani listed them to include, exclusive breastfeeding, provision of quality health care and good nutrition.