Minister of Health Peter Kumpalume on Monday said Malawi is among countries with the highest maternal and under-five mortality rates in the world.
Kumpalume said according to the United Nations Children’s Fund (Unicef) report of 2014, under-five mortality rate is estimated at 64 per 1 000 live births.
He said this in Lilongwe when he officially launched the 2016 Round One of Child Health Days to run up to March 11 this year.
Said Kumpalume: “The causes of child death in Malawi are malaria, diarrhoea and acute respiratory infections with malnutrition as the key contributing factor. This is not acceptable and we need a concerted effort to address the situation.”
The minister observed that since the 1990s, the country has registered notable success in most maternal and child health (MCH) services comprising immunisations, ante-natal and post-natal care, family planning, vitamin A supplementation, therapeutic and supplementary feeding.
During the health days, children aged six to 11 months and post-natal mothers less than eight weeks will receive vitamin A capsules. At the same time, children aged 12 to 59 months will receive vitamin A and de-worming tablets.
Malawi is targeting to reach 2.6 million children and 163 104 post-partum mothers with vitamin A supplementation and 1.5 million children with de-worming tablets.