Every year 9.7 million children die before reaching their fifth birthday. A new WaterAid report “Tacking the silent killer: The case for sanitation” asserts that improved sanitation could bring the single greatest reduction in these child deaths.
WaterAid’s report reveals that the current statistics on child mortality may be underestimating how many child deaths are attributable to poor sanitation. According to the report inadequate sanitation may be the biggest killer of children under the age of five, yet no governments are prioritising the issue, instead sanitation is the most neglected of all the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) sectors.
The report, released at the G8 Hokkaido summit in Japan, explores how the sanitation sector is being chronically and institutionally neglected by donors and developing country governments alike, resulting in as many as 2.4 million easily preventable child deaths a year; double the number of people killed worldwide in road traffic accidents.
Read more: WaterAid, 07 Jul 2008