Millennium Development Goal 4: Reduce child mortality
Target: Reduce by two-thirds, between 1990 and 2015, the under-five mortality rate
As supplementation is currently the primary vitamin A-deficiency control strategy and a key strategy for child survival, discussions of progress focus largely on coverage with that intervention. It should be noted that a number of countries, particularly in Latin America and the Caribbean and South Asia, are successfully fortifying staple foods such as sugar and oils with vitamin A.
The number of priority countries that reported on having achieved 80 per cent coverage with two doses totaled 32 in 2007. Close to half of all countries reaching at least 80 per cent of children with two doses were in sub-Saharan Africa, followed by East Asia and the Pacific, South Asia and then a handful of countries from CEE/CIS such as Azerbaijan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. Future efforts need to focus on addressing the programmatic bottlenecks so that coverage could improve to protect more children.