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Health News of Sunday, 5 May 2013

Source: etvnews

Pneumonia, now worst child-killer disease in Ghana

The possibility that children will become seriously ill or die depends largely on whether their immune systems can fight off infections. Malnutrition, combined with unsanitary or crowded conditions, makes them extremely vulnerable.

These are not the only problems children experience as they also have to contend with all childhood killer diseases.

According to the United Nations’ Children Emergency Fund, UNICEF, more than 30 million children across the globe are not immunized.

Ghana in the last decade has done a lot to introduce many types of vaccines into the health system to enable children have access.

For many years, people were aware of the six childhood killer diseases, but there are new additions making them eleven.

They include polio, whooping cough hepatitis B, measles and yellow fever.

Measles, for instance, rarely kills in industrial countries but can cause up to 40 per cent mortality among infected children in dire and overcrowded situations which may occur following earthquakes, floods or when populations are displaced by conflict.

The Millenium Development Goal 4 is targeting a great reduction in child mortality by 2015, and Ghana is greatly on cause due to many vaccines introduced.

Since October 20011, Ghana has been counted among nations that have eliminated neonatal tetanus and also became polio free since 2008.

Though measles used to be the number one childhood killer disease since 2003, a National Child Health Coordinator says, Pneumonia is now killing many children..

Dr. Sagoe-Moses also advises parents and guardians to adhere to safety precautions especially during the rainy season to prevent infections caused by pneumococcal infections.

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