By Abbas Aminu Bamalli
The Country Director of Save the Children Nigeria, Susan Grant, has disclosed that an estimated 2.9 million newborns die each year worldwide, and an additional 2.6 million are stillborn.
The director disclosed further that within the first 24 hours of life, more than one million babies die annually.
Grant disclosed this during the weekend in Abuja while launching the group’s report christened: ‘Ending Newborn Deaths’.
According to her, the report launch was aimed at highlighting the newborn health crisis and prompt targeted action necessary to minimize newborn mortality across the world.
“Findings in the report illustrate that half of first-day deaths around the world could be prevented if the mother and baby had access to free health care and a skilled midwife.
“These deaths occur because of premature births and complications during birth, such as prolonged labor, pre-eclampsia and infection, which can be avoided if quality healthcare is present”, Grant said.
Also, during the launching of the report, wife of former governor of Kwara state, Mrs. Toyin Saraki, who is the founder and President of a non-governmental organization (NGO), Wellbeing Foundation, was named the National Newborn Health Champion for Nigeria, for her contribution towards saving the lives of newborns and mothers on the African continent.