The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, has expressed worries that the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals may not be achieved, as it claims the world has collectively fallen short at the halfway point for attaining the SGD goals on good health.
According to the foundation’s seventh annual Harley and Hearty Report released on Wednesday, innovation and investment can however fuel progress, particularly in the fight against the global epidemic of maternal and child mortality.
The report highlights new data that shows the potential of scaling up global access to seven innovations and practices that would address the leading causes of maternal and newborn deaths.
It said since 2016, the progress made by Bill and Melinda Gate Foundation has reduced global maternal mortality rate in some countries.
The reports added that nearly 800 women die from childbirth every day, however, deaths of children under five have continued to decline since the mid-2010s.
It further reported that an estimated 74 percent of child deaths happen during a baby’s first year, as the first month of a newborn’s life continues to be the most dangerous, accounting for almost half of all under-five deaths.
The foundation also acknowledged the global efforts between 2000 and 2015 that significantly improved the health of mothers and babies, but pointed out that progress has stalled since the COVID-19 pandemic.
They explained how the discovery of revolutionary information about maternal and child health in the last 10 years led to low-cost and easy-to-implement innovations and practices that prevent and treat deadly childbirth complications such as post-partum haemorrhaging, infections, and maternal anaemia.
They however, call for an immediate action to help put the world back on track to achieve the global goal of cutting the maternal mortality rate to less than 70 out of 100,000 births and newborn mortality to 12 deaths per 1,000 live births by 2030.
“As is so often the case in global health, innovations aren’t making their way to the people who need them most—women in low-income countries, as well as Black and Indigenous women in high-income countries like the United States, who are dying at three times the rate of white women”.
According to them, innovations has been put in place, for the interventions that can reduce postpartum haemorrhage, the number one cause of maternal death, by 60 percent.
They said supplement that, when given to an infant alongside breastmilk, combats malnutrition one of the leading causes of newborn deaths has been put in place for distribution across health facilities in the world.