Maternal, Child and Reproductive Health

Child Health in Africa: Major Challenges and Achievements


In just thirty years, child mortality has declined dramatically: from more than 12 million deaths per year in children under five years of age to 5 million. This is due, in part, to improvements in health care, such as vaccination coverage (e.g. GAVI, the Vaccine Alliance) and several malaria prevention strategies.

However, the figure is still unacceptable, especially when there are cost-effective mechanisms and tools to address the main causes of death: poor delivery care, partial access to vaccines and treatments, or attention to poor maternal health, which is closely linked to child health, especially in the first months of life.

Clara Menéndez, director of ISGlobal's Maternal, Child and Reproductive Health Initiative and Programme, highlights some of the main challenges and achievements in child (and maternal) health in Africa.