Every single day, Nigeria loses about 2,300 under-five year olds 145 women of childbearing age. This makes the country the second largest contributor to the under–five maternal mortality rate in the world.
Underneath the statistics lies the pain of human tragedy, for thouss of families who have lost their children. Even more devastating is the knowledge that, according to recent research, essential interventions reaching women babies on time would have averted most of these deaths.
Although analyses of recent trends show that the country is making progress in cutting down infant under-five mortality rates, the pace still remains too slow to achieve the Millennium Development Goals of reducing child mortality a third 2015.
Preventable or treatable infectious diseases such as malaria, pneumonia, diarrhoea, measles HIV/AIDS account for more than 70 per cent of the estimated one million under-five deaths in Nigeria.
Malnutrition is the underlying cause of morbidity mortality of a large proportion of children under-5 in Nigeria. It accounts for more than 50 per cent of deaths of children in this age bracket.
The deaths of newborn babies in Nigeria represent a quarter of the total number of deaths of children under-five. The majority of these occur within the first week of life, mainly due to complications during pregnancy delivery reflecting the intimate link between newborn survival the quality of maternal care. Main causes of neonatal deaths are birth asphyxia, severe infection including tetanus premature birth.