UAE reduces infant mortality rate

A WHO report announces that the UAE has achieved the greatest success in reducing mortality rates compared to other Gulf countries.

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By  Stuart Qualtrough Published  August 2, 2005

The UAE has achieved the greatest success in reducing mortality rate among children under five compared to other Gulf and Arab countries, says a World Health Organisation (WHO) report. While the mortality rate of children in the UAE stands at eight for every thousand born, the percentage in other Gulf and Arab countries recorded is as high as 100 per 1,000. Bahrain marked the second lowest with nine deaths per thousand born while Yemen recorded the highest at 113. The child mortality rate in Saudi Arabia was 27, 13 in Qatar and 12 in Oman and Kuwait. The WHO report has urged the governments to speed up development of healthcare systems that are effective and comprehensive to provide families with proper health services. The report pointed out that expenditure on healthcare as percentage of GDP declined to 3.1% in 2002 from 4% in 1998. And total government expenditure on healthcare as percentage of total expenditure on healthcare declined from 77% in 1998 to 73.4% in 2002 while the private sector expenditure on healthcare rose to 26.6% in 2002 from 23% in 1998. The report said the total per capita expenditure healthcare in the UAE rose from $724 in 1998 to $802 in 2002. The per capita government expenditure on healthcare also rose to $557 in 1998 to $589 in 2002 in the UAE. Per capita government expenditure on healthcare in Yemen was $206, Oman $246, Qatar $935 and Kuwait $547. According to the WHO report, the vaccination coverage level for new borns was very high in the UAE and the last reported case of polio in the country was in 1992.The report has also warned that 11 million children globally under five years are likely to die in 2005 for reasons preventable.

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