Wednesday, September 22, 2010

New maternal and child health strategy announced at UN

An announcement of a new initiative has been made from the UN's Millennium Development Goal summit. UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon announced this morning the formation of the Global Strategy for Women's and Children's Health to improve the survival of infants and new mothers.

$40 billion dollars has been raised to fund the Global Strategy for Women's and Children's Health. A coalition of governments, philanthropists and corporations have pledged the cash to fund the strategy.

From this Associated Press article that we found at Google News, Tim Witcher details the goals and donors aof the strategy.

Cutting the unnecessary deaths of women during pregnancy and childbirth and stopping the premature deaths of children under five are the two most slowest moving goals of the eight key development targets set a decade ago.

The UN said spending on women and children reduces poverty, stimulates growth and is a fundamental human right.

Some 140 world leaders and heads of state have attended the summit, and US President Barack Obama will close the meet.

Countries from Afghanistan to Zambia -- but also including Australia, Britain, China, France, Germany, India, Japan, Russia and the United States -- have contributed to the drive.

The foundations of the world's richest men, Mexican tycoon Carlos Slim and Microsoft billionaire Bill Gates, were among the contributors. They joined rights groups such as Amnesty International and multinationals such as LG Electronics and Pfizer.

A UN statement said the deaths of more than 15 million children under five would be saved between 2011 and 2015 through the initiative.

It added that it would prevent 33 million unwanted pregnancies and 740,000 women from dying from complications relating to pregnancy and childbirth. It estimated that 120 million children would be protected from pneumonia.

The UN Children's Fund, the World Health Organization and the World Bank re among international bodies that will help mobilize support for Ban's drive.

It was unclear how much of the 40 billion dollars announced is a new spending commitment.

No comments: