Goal 4: Reduce Child Mortality Rate
Some progress has been made in reducing child mortality. According to United Nations estimates, the under-five mortality rate fell from 47 per 1,000 live births in 1990 to 30 per 1,000 live births in 2008. The neonatal mortality rate fell from 41 to 26 in the same time period. However, it is obvious that Georgia will not be able to meet the national Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) target for child survival in reducing Infant Mortality Rates (IMR) to 7 and Under 5 Mortality Rate (U5MR) to 8 without urgently addressing emerging need of Perinatal/Neonatal system strengthening.
UNICEF Action to reduce Child Mortality
Upstream UNICEF support:
• Development of evidence-based clinical practice guidelines and treatment protocols for health service providers at all levels.
• Introducing contemporary ECD approaches within State Medical University.
• Establishment of a new Alliance on Early Childhood Development (ECD), consisting of Parliamentarians, academic experts and civil society actors, created with UNICEF support, ensured endorsement of the Early Childhood Development National Strategic Plan of Action.
• Development of a fifteen year Master Plan and respective Plan of Action with estimated resources for perinatal/neonatal system strengthening.
Downstream UNICEF support:
• Establishment of the first child development centre in Georgia dedicated to promoting positive child-rearing and -caring practices at family and community levels through an integrated early childhood development approach.
• Development and nation-wide roll-out of a ‘Parent-Baby Book’ (Child’s Personal Record on Health and Development).
• Timely and continued infant feeding/micronutrient and vitamin supplementation for ID children (0-5 years), IDP pregnant and lactating women in Georgia during 2008 armed conflict
• Immunisation coverage remains over 90 per cent.
• Universal Iodization of Salt (99 per cent).
• Significant reduction of low-birth weight children.
UNICEF current focus/New initiatives:
• Reduction in Neonatal Mortality - Strengthen the capacity for provision of maternal and child care.
• Improving maternal and child health outcomes in Georgia by using modern Information and Communication Technologies.
• Introduce a coherent and sustainable system of health promotion.