World Health Organization’ s 2019 Statistics report says substantial progress has been made in reducing child deaths since 2000, with the global under-5 mortality rate dropping by 49%, from 77 deaths per 1000 live births in 2000 to 39 in 2017. This is equivalent of 1 in 14 children dying before reaching age 5 in 2017, compared with 1 in 13 dying before age 5 in 2000.
An estimated 5.4 Million children aged less than 5 years died in 2017, of whom 2.5 Million were female and 2.9 Million male. Of these deaths, 2.5 Million occurred during the first 28 days of life. Globally, death rates in the first month of life fell by 41% from 31 per 1000 live births in 2000 to 18 in 2017, a smaller reduction in mortality compared with the 54% reduction in mortality for children aged 1.59 months. Under-5 mortality rates are highest in the WHO African region and in low-income countries, where one child dies out of 14 born.
An estimated 5.4 Million children aged less than 5 years died in 2017, of whom 2.5 Million were female and 2.9 Million male. Of these deaths, 2.5 Million occurred during the first 28 days of life. Globally, death rates in the first month of life fell by 41% from 31 per 1000 live births in 2000 to 18 in 2017, a smaller reduction in mortality compared with the 54% reduction in mortality for children aged 1.59 months. Under-5 mortality rates are highest in the WHO African region and in low-income countries, where one child dies out of 14 born.More than half of under-5 child deaths are due to diseases that are preventable and treatable through simple, affordable interventions. The leading causes of death in young children over 28 days of age remain pneumonia, diarrhoea, birth defects and malaria. Rates of death from all conditions are higher in low-income countries, but children in low-income countries are more than 100 times more likely to die from infectious diseases than those in high-income countries.
Children who die within the first 28 days of birth suffer from conditions and diseases associated with lack of quality care at birth, or skilled care and treatment immediately after birth and in the first days of life. Preterm birth, intrapartum-related complications, infections and birth defects caused the most neonatal deaths in 2017. Most new born deaths take place in low and middle-income countries, and two regions accounted for almost 70% of new-born deaths in 2017- the WHO Africa Region and South-East Asia region. WHO says it is possible to improve the survival and health of new-borns by achieving high coverage of quality antenatal care, skilled care at birth, postnatal care for mother and baby, and care of small and sick new-borns. In 2017, male children were 11% more likely to die before the age of 5 years. Boys have a higher probability of dying before reaching the age of 5 years than girls for biological reasons, including less lung maturity at birth and less resistance to infectious diseases. New-born boys often weigh more at birth, but have higher perinatal mortality and more frequent congenital malformations. Immunoregulatory genes linked to the X-chromosome confer greater resistance to infectious diseases on girls, who have two X-chromosomes compared with boys, who have one X-chromosome.
The report further said because boys have a higher biological risk of death than girls, as assessment of gender bias in health outcomes cannot be based on equality of the under-5 mortality rate. Rather, mortality rates close to unity are indicative of female disadvantage. The risk of dying before the age of 5 years is higher in boys in all income groups set by the World Bank and in all regions. However, in the WHO South East Asia Region, the risk is almost equal, indicating high rate of avoidable mortality among females under the age of 5 years. Nutrition-related factors contributed to about 45% of deaths in children under the age of 5 years. Malnourished children, particularly those with severe acute malnutrition, have a higher risk of death from common childhood illnesses such as diarrhoea, pneumonia and malaria. In most countries, a higher proportion of boys are malnourished than girls in the age group of 0-5 years.
Sex differences in nutritional status have been attributed to biological differences in morbidity between boys and girls in early life. In addition, boys grow faster during infancy, resulting in greater energy needs. Use of health care services can contribute to differences in mortality rates between boys and girls. However, most studies find that both girls and boys are equally likely to be taken for care when ill, although a bias is observed in some locations. In a United Nation’s Children Fund review, a higher proportion of boys were taken to treatment centres for pneumonia in six countries out of 67 with data, whereas in one of those 67 countries. Hospitalizations for pneumonia, diarrhoea and fever were found to be higher in boys than girls, whereas case fatality rates were higher in girls than in boys, perhaps as a result of greater delays in care –seeking or poorer quality of care. Gender-based discrimination in health care affecting girls is reported mainly from South Asia and China, with sporadic reports from Africa and South America. WHO stressed that vaccines are available for some of the most deadly childhood diseases, such as measles, polio, diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis, pneumonia to Haemophilus influenza type B and Streptococcus pneumonia and diarrhoea due to rotavirus. Vaccination rates are similar between boys and girls. Use of pneumococcal conjugate and rotavirus vaccines is lagging, especially in middle-income countries without donor support. Vaccination against both these diseases has the potential to substantially reduce deaths of children aged less than 5 years, because pneumonia and diarrhoea are the leading causes of death in this age group.
Globally, countries with a low under-5 mortality rate have high male female ratio of 31; 32, partly because congenital diseases predominate when mortality is low. Countries with a high under-5 mortality rate have low male female mortality ratios. Both high under-5 mortality rate and low male female ratios are associated with low socioeconomic status and gender inequality. Progress in reducing the under-5 in the male female since 2000 was accompanied by an increase in the M/F mortality ratio from 1.06 in 2000 to 1.11 in 2017, indicating that the decline in the female under-5 mortality rate was faster than that for males. Reductions in the under-5 mortality rate are accompanied not only by higher M/F ratios but also by reduction in fertility. Smaller families reduce the chances of a couple having a child of any givens sex. In societies with a preference for male children, reductions in the under-5 mortality rate have been accompanied by another type of female disadvantage- that is, a disadvantage in nasality- through selective abortion of female foetuses. Increases in the M/F sex ratio at birth have been seen in parts of East Asia, South Asia and the South Caucuses. Male female ratios at birth have been seen to be higher if a couple’s previous children have been female; also, multiparous women are more likely to have prenatal knowledge of the sex of their foetus, resulting in sex selection and more male births than in premiparous women.
A number of actions can be envisaged to address female disadvantage in populations with an atypically high female under-5 mortality rate, including policies to discourage sex-selective abortions, financial incentives to have female children, and policies that address the marginalized status of women or the provision of social protection in old age. The development of policies that will improve child health morbidity and mortality, and more qualitative research that can reveal the harmful gender norms and expectations that result in discriminatory treatment of boys and girls. Female disadvantage is of widespread concern and must be tackled. In addition, the WHO added that the specific needs of boys should be addressed. ‘’boys experience higher rates of mortality than girls in most of the world, and as the under-5 mortality rate falls globally, the M/F mortality ratio is increasing. In countries that have achieved large reductions in the under-5 mortality rate, additional actions may need to be taken to improve health outcomes for boys, to ensure continued progress towards SDG Target 3.2.
DJ Sway ‘saved’ the YAMAs
DJ Sway, the daring and ambitious on-air presenter of Yarona FM, played a crucial role in saving the radio station’s music awards, known as the YAMAs. The event was initially dry and disorganized, but DJ Sway, who co-hosted with Pearl Thusi, injected life into the show. However, things took a turn for the worse when Pearl Thusi abruptly left the stage, leaving DJ Sway to carry on alone. Despite the unexpected setback, DJ Sway rose to the occasion and captivated the audience, effectively putting an end to the drama caused by Pearl Thusi.
In an exclusive interview after the YAMAs, DJ Sway revealed the behind-the-scenes chaos that unfolded during the event. He acknowledged the script editors, Phalana and Hope, who worked tirelessly to reedit the script and adapt it to a one-host format. Despite the last-minute changes, DJ Sway remained composed and focused, thanks to the support of his colleagues, such as Owen Rampha, Katlego Rakola, Tshepang Motsisi (DJ Easy), and LB.
When asked about his initial reaction to the unexpected turn of events, DJ Sway admitted to feeling saddened by how things ended. However, he credited Pearl Thusi for giving him a much-needed confidence boost during his moment of doubt. She reminded him that he was destined for greatness and that he didn’t need big stars to succeed. With her words of encouragement, DJ Sway regained his composure and approached the rest of the show with the same professionalism and charisma he displays on the radio.
To overcome the challenges he faced, DJ Sway relied on his radio skills and calm personality. He engaged with the audience as if he were speaking to a single person, pointing out individuals in the crowd to create a more intimate connection. He also expressed gratitude for his backstage team, who provided support and ensured the smooth running of the show.
DJ Sway expressed satisfaction in being seen as the saving grace of the YAMAs. He believed that he fulfilled his role as a host and brought joy to the Yarona FM board, his family, and his fans. Despite his success, DJ Sway’s journey has not been without hardships. He has experienced the loss of his mother and sister, which has left a lasting impact on him. While he continues to grieve, he seeks solace in therapy sessions and relies on his father for emotional support.
DJ Sway’s dedication to his craft and ability to overcome adversity make him a remarkable figure in the radio industry. His vibrant personality and deep knowledge of music have made him a perfect fit for Yarona FM. Despite the challenges he has faced, DJ Sway remains determined to make a positive impact and bring joy to his listeners. With his talent and resilience, there is no doubt that DJ Sway will continue to thrive in his career and leave a lasting legacy in the world of radio.
Chef Gustos walk of shame
Chef Gustos, the renowned hitmaker, recently experienced what can only be described as a walk of shame at the 8th edition of the Yarona FM Music Awards (YAMAs). Despite being nominated a whopping seven times, he failed to secure a single win. Ouch!
The night was filled with surprises, drama, and controversy, but the biggest winner of the evening was Han C, who walked away with three awards, including Best Pop and Best Male Single for his hit song, “Sebinki.” Han C graciously announced that he would be donating P10,000 from his winnings to his fellow nominees, promoting a spirit of togetherness among artists. What a noble gesture!
Meanwhile, Chef Gustos found himself on the losing end of several categories, including People’s Choice Artist of the Year, which he had won in the past. He seemed unfazed by the loss, stating, “People know that ‘Away’ was big, but they won’t stop me.” It’s clear that Chef Gustos is determined to continue making music, regardless of the awards he receives.
However, he did express his frustration with the outcome, suggesting that the awards may be corrupt. He declined to comment further, citing the need to protect his brand and maintain good relationships with corporate clients. It’s understandable that he wants to avoid any potential damage to his future prospects.
In fact, Chef Gustos went so far as to request that Yarona FM not nominate him for future YAMAs. It seems he wants to distance himself from the disappointment and focus on his music without the pressure of awards. Perhaps this decision will allow him to create freely and without the burden of expectations.
While Chef Gustos may have experienced a walk of shame at the YAMAs, it’s important to remember that awards do not define an artist’s talent or success. His fans still appreciate his music, and he continues to have gigs with corporate clients. So, despite the disappointment, Chef Gustos remains optimistic about his future in the industry.
In the end, the YAMAs may have been a letdown for Chef Gustos, but he’s determined to keep moving forward. He won’t let a lack of awards dampen his spirits or hinder his creativity. And who knows, maybe next time he’ll come back stronger and prove that he’s deserving of recognition. After all, the true measure of an artist’s success lies in the hearts of their fans, not in shiny trophies.
Women in Science: Breaking Glass Ceilings
Women scientists have made significant contributions to the field of science, yet they continue to face numerous challenges and barriers. Despite their remarkable achievements, women represent only a fraction of researchers globally, and their work often goes unrecognized. The need for scientific role models to inspire the younger generation is urgent. However, organizations like the Fondation L’Oréal and UNESCO are working tirelessly to empower women scientists and promote gender equality in the scientific community.
The Fondation L’Oréal and UNESCO have collaborated for over two years to support and recognize women scientists who have achieved scientific excellence. These organizations have awarded more than 100 laureates, with five of them going on to win Nobel Prizes. These women researchers, who have worked in various scientific fields across different continents, are not only changing the world through their discoveries but also serving as role models for aspiring women scientists.
The L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science programs annually support over 250 talented young women researchers. Through regional and national programs, the Fondation L’Oréal and UNESCO provide crucial support to these researchers during their thesis or post-doctoral studies. While progress has been made, there is still much work to be done to achieve true gender equality in science. However, both organizations remain determined to make this vision a reality.
Recently, the Fondation L’Oréal and UNESCO hosted thirty winners of the L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science 14th Rising Talents Sub-Saharan Africa awards in Kasane. These awards recognize African women scientists for their outstanding research. During a press conference, Fondation L’Oréal CEO Alexandra Palt emphasized the importance of empowering women scientists in Sub-Saharan Africa, a continent that suffers greatly from climate disruption. Palt highlighted the challenges these women face, including overcoming prejudice, sexism, and harassment, to become accomplished scientists.
The finalists of the awards are scientists, PhD students, and post-doctoral researchers who are advancing various disciplines such as biology, agronomy, physics, mathematics, genetics, and engineering. Their goal is to improve the daily lives of Africa’s people, whether through advancements in health or the environment. These women, such as Dairou Hadidjatou, a pioneer in cardiovascular disease treatment in Cameroon, Esther Uwimaana, conducting research on potential tuberculosis vaccines, and Mwende Mbilo, innovating clean energy solutions in Kenya, are driven by their desire to advance science and society.
The need for scientific role models to inspire the younger generation is crucial. Palt emphasized that Africa currently represents only 2.5% of scientists globally, making it challenging for young girls in Africa to pursue scientific careers when women researchers in their countries are often invisible in the media, scientific publications, and international forums. To address this, the Fondation L’Oréal and UNESCO have increased the number of young talents awarded from 20 to 30. These researchers also receive leadership training to enhance their communication and negotiation skills, as well as their ability to address harassment and speak publicly or with the media.
By highlighting the achievements of these women scientists, the Fondation L’Oréal and UNESCO aim to break the glass ceiling and provide them with the recognition they deserve. It is essential to take urgent action on multiple levels to enable these talented women to emerge onto the public stage and be acknowledged for their excellent work. Only then can we truly achieve gender equality in the scientific community.
In conclusion, women scientists have made significant contributions to science, yet they continue to face numerous challenges and barriers. Organizations like the Fondation L’Oréal and UNESCO are working tirelessly to empower women scientists and promote gender equality in the scientific community. By recognizing and supporting these women, we can inspire the younger generation and create a world where women in science are celebrated and their work is valued.