News / Health

USAID Unveils New Efforts to Reduce Child and Maternal Deaths

USAID Unveils New Efforts to Reduce Child and Maternal Deathsi
X
Mariama Diallo
June 25, 2014 2:27 PM
The head of the U.S. Agency for International Development, Rajiv Shah, says that every day this year 18,000 more children will live and 700 more mothers will survive compared to the daily maternal and child mortality rate in 1990. Shah's agency will host a forum Wednesday in collaboration with governments of India, Ethiopia and other partners to mark the second anniversary of the Child and Maternal Survival Call to Action. VOA's Mariama Diallo reports.
Mariama Diallo

The head of the  U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), Rajiv Shah, says that every day this year 18,000 more children will live and 700 more mothers will survive compared to the daily maternal and child mortality rate in 1990.  Shah's agency will host a forum Wednesday in collaboration with governments of India, Ethiopia and other partners to mark the second anniversary of the Child and Maternal Survival Call to Action.  USAID will spend up to $2.9 billion of the agency’s resources to continue the fight for maternal and child health in 24 countries.

While child deaths have dropped from 12.6 million in 1990 to 6.6 million in 2012, 16,000 children and 800 mothers are dying every day, says the U.S. Agency for International Development. 

"The goal of ending preventable child and maternal death is within reach. Two years ago, USAID partnered with organizations around the world to help achieve this goal." says administrator Rajiv Shah.

"After the Call to Action, 176 countries signed a pledge to make this a priority, report on the outcomes using report cards and quantitative measures of ‘Are we delivering success,’" 

"And on Wednesday I will announce America’s commitment to that Call to Action in which we will be repositioning nearly $3 billion of investment to save an additional 500,000 child lives between now and the end of 2015," he added.

USAID also plans $650 million in partnership awards with nearly two dozen companies to help distribute life saving drugs like amoxicillin to 5,500 rural villages.

In 2015, the U.N. Millennium Development goals and its targets, including improving child and maternal health, will expire.

 "We are working with a number of partners to identify what those issue areas are and then bringing in those strategic assets that each organization can help," explained Anita Sharma, with the U.N. program called Every Woman Every Child. "We will not be there in 2015, but we certainly know... the unfinished agenda of the MDG’s will continue far beyond 2015."

Despite the resurgence of conflicts in some areas, both Sharma and Shah say progress is being made.

"We are helping to train health community workers so that they know how to help women and children gain access to medicines when they need them," said Shah. "We are helping to distribute misoprostol, which helps to prevent post-partum or post-birth bleeding amongst women - that is still the number one cause of maternal death in South Sudan."

Sharma says money is one of the challenges, but the political will to prioritize health is also needed.  USAID Director Shah points to India as a good example.

"They have focused their efforts on ending child death in 132 districts that have the highest rates of under-five child mortality," he said. "They have moved resources from middle-income communities to poor communities in order to protect and save more children."

These new efforts to save an unprecedented number of women and children by USAID and its partners take center stage this week in Washington. 

You May Like

Video Five Patients Given Experimental Ebola Drug Said To Be Improving

Experimental drugs have been tried on six people: three Westerners and now, three African pyhysicians More

Video In Ukraine, Fear and Distrust Remain Where Fighting has Stopped

As Ukrainian military reclaims control of eastern cities residents rebuild their lives, but many say everyone is being treated with suspicion More

Video In Rural Kenya, Pressure Builds Against Female Circumcision

Girls learn to object; FGM practitioners face penalties from jail sentences to stiff fines More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: eusebio manuel vestias from: Portugal
June 26, 2014 9:57 AM
Thanks USAID help women and children in poor parts of the World

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Five Patients Given Experimental Ebola Drug Said to Be Improvingi
X
Carol Pearson
August 19, 2014 11:43 PM
The World Health Organization has approved the use of experimental treatments for Ebola patients in West Africa. The Ebola outbreak there is unprecedented, the disease deadly. The number of people who have died from Ebola has surpassed 1,200. VOA's Carol Pearson reports on the ethical considerations of allowing experimental drugs to be used.
Video

Video Five Patients Given Experimental Ebola Drug Said to Be Improving

The World Health Organization has approved the use of experimental treatments for Ebola patients in West Africa. The Ebola outbreak there is unprecedented, the disease deadly. The number of people who have died from Ebola has surpassed 1,200. VOA's Carol Pearson reports on the ethical considerations of allowing experimental drugs to be used.
Video

Video In Ukraine, Fear and Distrust Remain Where Fighting has Stopped

As the Ukrainian military reclaims control of eastern cities from pro-Russian separatists, residents are getting a chance to rebuild their lives. VOA's Gabe Joselow reports from the town of Kramatorsk in Donetsk province, where a sense of fear is still in the air, and distrust of the government in Kyiv still runs deep.
Video

Video China Targets Overseas Assets of Corrupt Officials

As China presses forward with its anti-graft effort, authorities are targeting corrupt officials who have sent family members and assets overseas. The efforts have stirred up a debate at home on exactly how many officials take that route and how likely it is they will be caught. Rebecca Valli has this report.
Video

Video Leading The Fight Against Islamic State, Kurds Question Iraqi Future

Western countries including the United States have begun arming the Kurdish Peshmerga forces in northern Iraq to aid their battle against extremist Sunni militants from the Islamic State. But there are concerns that a heavily-armed Kurdistan Regional Government, or KRG, might seek to declare independence and cause the break-up of the Iraqi state. As Henry Ridgwell reports from London, the KRG says it will only seek greater autonomy from Baghdad.
Video

Video In Rural Kenya, Pressure Builds Against Female Circumcision

In some Kenyan communities, female genital mutilation remains a rite of passage. But activists are pushing back, with education for girls and with threats of punishment those who perform the circumcision. Mohammed Yusuf looks at the practice in the rural eastern community of Tharaka-Nithi.
Video

Video For Obama, Racial Violence is Personal Issue

The racial violence in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson is presenting U.S. President Barack Obama with an issue to which he has a deep personal connection. To many Americans, Obama's election as America's first black president marked a turning point in race relations in the United States, and Obama has made ending the violence a policy priority. On Monday he issued a new call for calm and understanding. Luis Ramirez reports from the White House.
Video

Video Clinton-Obama Relationship Could Impact 2016 Election

President Barack Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton have a long and complicated relationship. That relationship took another turn recently when Clinton criticized the president’s foreign policy. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports there is renewed attention on the Clinton-Obama relationship as Hillary Clinton considers running for
Video

Video Iran Looks to Maintain Influence in Baghdad With New Shia PM

Washington and Tehran share the goal of stopping Syrian-based militants in Iraq. But experts say it's Iran, not the United States, that will most influence how the new government in Baghdad approaches internal reforms and the war in Syria. VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns has the story.

AppleAndroid