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$5.1 billion would save 6 million children

care provider from one month before birth until the child reaches age five. In their cost analysis, the researchers also ensured that treatment for the major causes of child death were available to all children who needed them. Universal coverage levels from 2000 for drugs and other materials, delivery of treatment, program management and support were calculated to obtain the average cost to save a child's life. The cost of some of the interventions, such as vaccines to prevent infection with Haemophilus influenzae type b, may drop substantially as more extensive use reduces the price.

According to the study authors, full implementation of preventive interventions would reduce the current annual cost of treatment by over 60 percent, due to the projected reduction in child illnesses. Furthermore, the delivery of integrated preventive and therapeutic services would be far more efficient than parallel delivery of each intervention separately.

"The focus is on community-based resources, which decrease costs since building hospitals and other fixed resources isn't necessary. It is our hope that policymakers, donors and governments will use our price estimates to strengthen their health systems. If they don't, 16,000 children will continue to die each day as a result," said Jennifer Bryce, EdD, lead author of the study.

This study follows a series of articles by Black, Bryce and their colleagues, published by The Lancet starting in June 2003, which examines the means to reduce global child mortality. They found that at least 6 million child deaths worldwide could be prevented with existing interventions to prevent and treat pneumonia, diarrhea, malaria, neonatal sepsis, preterm delivery and asphyxia at birth, disorders that annually cause almost three-quarters of child deaths worldwide. The researchers calculate that a two-thirds reduction in child death can be accomplished by new resources that are easily within the capability of low-income countr
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Source:Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health


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