UNICEF Nigeria has reported that an additional 950 Nigerian children could die every day from preventable causes over the next six months as the COVID-19 pandemic disrupts routine services and threatens to weaken the health system.
In a statement, UNICEF warns that these disruptions could result in potentially devastating increases in maternal and child deaths.
According to the In Nigeria, these potential child deaths would be in addition to the 475,200 children who already die before their fifth birthday every six months – threatening to reverse a decade of progress in ending preventable under-five child mortality in Nigeria.
Also About 6,800 more Nigerian maternal deaths could also occur in just six months.
UNICEF Nigeria’s Country Representative, Peter Hawkinssaid, there has been steady progress in reducing preventable child and maternal deaths in Nigeria over the last 20 years and it would be devastating if that progress is lost or reversed thereby devasting for Nigerian families, communities and for the country as a whole.
The statement further reveals that The under-five mortality rate has declined gradually over the last two decades in Nigeria – from 213 deaths per thousand in 1990 to 120 today.
This is likely due to improved access and coverage of key lifesaving interventions at primary health care and community levels and improved immunization rates.