Babies born in Cuba, Malaysia, Portugal, and the United Kingdom have a better chance of surviving the first month compared to those born in the United States, according to researchers at the World Health Organization and Save the Children.
In a 20 year analysis of newborn death rates around the world, the study published in PLoS Medicine revealed the number ofinfants who die before they are4 weeks old account for 41% of child deaths worldwide. Newborn deaths in the United Statesranked 41 out of 45 among industrialized countries, onpar with Qatar and Croatia. health care system as the best in the world. Researchers say preterm delivery (delivering before 37 weeks) plays a role in the United State lowerranking.
“Prenatal care is not all created equal. There are areas of the United States where access to prenatal and preventive care is a real problem. Joy Lawn of the non government organization Save the Children.
The study says the leading causes of newborn death worldwide are preterm delivery, asphyxia and severe infections. More than a half million babies in the United States 1 in every 8 are born premature each year.
The United States has seen a 26% reduction in newborn deaths since 1990, but that number is lower than the global average. but at a notably slower rate than other countries,” says Lawn. “We actually found 50 countries, including China, have dropped their newborn death rate by more than 50% in the last 20 years.”
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Half of the 3.3 million newborn deaths around the world occur in just five countries: Pakistan, China, Democratic Republic of Congo, India, and Nigeria. But researchers say the newborn death rates in these regions can be decreased by utilizing known interventions: Improving hygiene when a baby is born, breastfeeding and keeping babies warm after birth.
“Society often thinks people won’t change their behaviors, but that’s not true. These mothers want their babies to survive, too. They just don’t know better right now,” says Lawn.
Health experts say simply teaching midwives and community workers in Africa and South Asia proper hygiene care and how to properly wrap the baby can limit infections and have a profound impact on death rates. Also teaching “kangaroo mother care,” which is when a mother ties the newborn baby to their chest, can cut the number of deaths in half, according to Save the Children.
If you have good insurance and a solid cash reserve, you will find the US health care system to be great. In fact, you will find the best health care services that money can buy. That is why people of means come from all around the world to do major procedures here. However, if you do not have insurance or much money, it is a crap shoot. Sure, you can see a doctor through an emergency room if you are in a pinch, but that can wipe out a family living pay check to pay check. Moreover, what poor folks do not get is the ongoing patient care, such as prenatal care, that is critical to preventing major health problems and effectively treating (at an early stage) those medical problems that do arise. Personally, I do not feel right knowing that children are dying in my country because their mothers cannot afford health care. That does not sit right with me.
September 1, 2011 at 00:25
Report abuse Reply 42 of the world 52 surviving babies born at weights under 400g were born in America
Some of the countries reporting do not count babies that die within the first 24 hours as live births, they count them as either or and therefore do not affect mortality rates. In America, if you have a heartbeat when you are born then you are considered alive. (40% of all infant deaths occur within 24 hours. Gee, think that skews the stats a little?)
In Switzerland, a baby under 30cm at birth is not considered a live birth.
Basically, a lot of other countries don even count high risk babies toward their mortality rate statistics. This study is bogus.
September 1, 2011 at 03:27
What? Third world infant mortality statistics in the good ole USA don sit well? Unfortunately it sits quite well with the majority so get used to it, and get used to those statistics and other benchmarks of a modern, healthy society to worsen over time as the economic situation declines and the forces of reaction keep their sights aimed in the wrong direction as usual, at the poor. America is in fact a third world country. You have enormous affluence at the top, a middle class that is disappearing, tens of millions of citizens on food stamps, homelessness skyrocketing with families living in tented slums in nearly every city, and a two headed political oligarchy bought and paid for by corporations funnelling tax money to bail out incompetence. And then you have the tea party fools and deluded liberals who keep voting in the same idiots who are on the take. After nearly fifty years of embargo and economic strangulation, Cuba of all places still manages to offer its people a better health care system than Uncle Sam. But hey, the medical insurance industry and pharmaceutical corporations are doing wonders for large wealthy shareholders, and that all that really matters to everyone, starting from the corporate CEOs, the back pocket politicians, and the Cletus crowd on main street. For them its long live American style capitalism in all its glory, the largest and best mafia organization in the world. Congratulations, you’re number 1, you’re number 1.
September 1, 2011 at 06:13
Jo, you mentioned Medicaid, but I don think you understand that Medicaid is not available to adults unless you are receiving SSI (Social Security Insurance) which is a federally funded disability check. If you do not receive disability then you do not qualify for medicaid as an adult regardless of how little you make. We make barely over 400.00 per month for my husbands unemployment benefits, and although I have been a lifelong asthma sufferer, I cannot get medicaid. Our children do, but they are as healthy as little horses and very rarely need it. Brian was right, unless you have money and good insurance, we as Americans are at the bottom of the barrel when it comes to receiving even adequate health care, much less top notch.
September 1, 2011 at 07:10
Durp, you are incorrect. The WHO does not use individual country definitions for its statistics, it applies its own criteria. They are all the same. And why would anyone claim that Switzerland does not aggrssively treat premature infants? Did you just make that up? Europe bashing will not change the fact that prenatal care in the US is very uneven, which results in a higher infant mortality rate. Americans would rather accept that outcome than pay for someone else health care, which is your prrogative. But the numbers are real.