From Save the Children:
More than 1 million babies die on the first day of life – making the birth day the most dangerous day for babies in nearly every country, rich and poor alike. This is one of the major findings of Save the Children’s 14th annual State of the World’s Mothers report. The findings indicate, as never before, that helping babies survive the first day – and the first week – of life represents the greatest remaining challenge in reducing child mortality and meeting the ambitious Millennium Development Goal of reducing 1990 child mortality rates by two- thirds by 2015.
The world has made unprecedented progress since 1990 in reducing maternal and child deaths. Working together, governments, communities, nongovernmental organizations and families have reduced the annual number of children under 5 who die each year by over 40 percent – from 12 million to 6.9 million. Progress for mothers has been even greater, with deaths declining almost 50 percent since 1990 – from 543,000 to 287,000 per year.
But we have made much less progress for the children who are the most vulnerable of all – newborns. In 2011, 3 million babies died in their first month of life. This is 43 percent of all deaths of children under age 5 worldwide. Three-quarters of those newborns died in the first week of their lives, and one-third did not survive their first day of life.