Millennium Development Goal 4


Target 4.A:
Reduce by two thirds, between 1990 and 2015, the under-five mortality rate

  • Despite population growth, the number of deaths in children under five worldwide declined from 12.4 million in 1990 to 6.9 million in 2011, which translates into about 14,000 fewer children dying each day.
  • Since 2000, measles vaccines have averted over 10 million deaths.
  • Despite determined global progress in reducing child deaths, an increasing proportion of child deaths are in sub-Saharan Africa where one in nine children die before the age of five and in Southern Asia where one in 16 die before age five.
  • As the rate of under-five deaths overall declines, the proportion that occurs during the first month after birth is increasing.
  • Children born into poverty are almost twice as likely to die before the age of five as those from wealthier families.
  • Children of educated mothers—even mothers with only primary schooling—are more likely to survive than children of mothers with no education.

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