Child Health

43% of children under five living in resource-limited settings are not likely to reach their full development potential (The Lancet, 2016). Evidence shows a direct link between poor maternal and neonatal care and child health outcomes.

Child Health

43% of children under five living in resource-limited settings are not likely to reach their full development potential (The Lancet, 2016). Evidence shows a direct link between poor maternal and neonatal care and child health outcomes.

In 2015 and in developing countries, 45% of under-five years old children death occurred within the first month, the most vulnerable time in a child’s life, with many of these deaths occurring within the first day of life (WHO, 2015).

Although significant progress has been made towards the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) over the past 15 years, there must be an acceleration of the progress if countries are to meet the new targets of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Goal 3 aims to not only reduce but END preventable deaths of newborns and children under 5 years of age.

WAHA’s Action

Improving children’s health represents a core activity for WAHA International, and is an integral component of many of the interventions that we deliver across complex and diverse settings. Children are especially vulnerable in situations of violence, displacement or in resource limited areas.

An emphasis is placed on improving access to pediatric and neonatal health services for vulnerable populations, whether in the context of humanitarian crises or due to chronically poor access to health care.

Neonatal Care

Neonatal periods are the crucial first 28 days of life, when the infant is at highest risk of death. Newborns are particularly vulnerable to infectious diseases, malnutrition and other preventable illnesses. Neonatal care includes the promotion of breastfeeding, the training and availability of midwives, availability of health resources including supplies and medicines, as well as proper diagnosis of newborn illnesses.

WAHA focuses on increasing the provision of neonatal care services in hospitals and in health facilities where we work and to ensure access to populations where services would otherwise be unavailable. This means ensuring that there are trained midwives and skilled birth attendants to assist in deliveries and tend to newborn care, including identifying and treating any illnesses without delay.

Pediatric Care

The majority of child deaths are easily preventable and many child illnesses are treatable if appropriate care is made accessible.

IMG-20160617-WA0018WAHA International uses an approach called Integrated Management of Child Illness (IMCI), which is aimed at reducing mortality, morbidity and promoting improved development of children under five years of age. The approach differs from the commonly used single condition approach and is more appropriate as children are often suffering from more than one illness at a time. Furthermore, studies have shown that this method is more effective and can be cost saving if carried out correctly, as it includes multiple levels of care including addressing family and community practices.

WAHA also provides and reinforces basic pediatric healthcare through primary health centers in settings where communities may not otherwise have access. The care options include a full range of preventative and curative interventions, as part of standard care. Vaccinations are given to children at the appropriate stages, which can prevent some of the deadliest childhood diseases such as measles, pneumococcus, rotavirus, pertussis, tetanus, and hemophilia influenzae (HIB).

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