Today’s map comes from Save the Children’s flagship annual State of the World’s Mothers report. This year, for the first time, Save the Children added a new Birth Day Risk index, which ranks countries by the chances that a baby will die on the first day of life.
It finds that nearly two thirds of all newborn deaths occur in these ten countries.
Nearly two-thirds of all newborn deaths (2 million out of 3 million each year) occur in just 10 countries. Many of these countries have very large populations (such as China and Indonesia) and others have high percentages of newborns dying (Afghanistan, DR Congo, Ethiopia and Tanzania). Several have both large populations and high newborn mortality rates (Bangladesh, India, Nigeria and Pakistan). These are places where mothers are also at high risk of death during pregnancy and childbirth – 59 percent of maternal deaths occur in these same 10 countries.
The USA is not immune to this problem. According to the report, it is a riskier place to be born than 68 other countries.
In the industrialized world, the United States has 60 percent of all first-day deaths, but only 38 percent of live births. Approximately 11,300 U.S. babies died on the first day of life in 2011, the report says. Some U.S. counties have first-day death rates common in the developing world, where 98 percent of all first-day deaths occur.