Today is World Pneumonia Day. Why? Pneumonia is the leading killer of children under five. 1.3 million people dies of pneumonia last year and 1 in 8 children were a part of those mortality figures according to worldpneumoniaday.org.
Pneumonia is an infectious, bacterial disease that adversely affects one’s lungs.
How can pneumonia be prevented?
- Vaccines against pneumococcus, Hib, pertussis, and measles can prevent a significant portion of pneumonia cases from ever occurring.5
- Other preventative strategies include: zinc supplementation for children with diarrhea, prevention of HIV infection in children & antibiotic prophylaxis for HIV-infected children.5
Also, mothers can protect their children against pneumonia through exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of their baby’s life. Regular handwashing cuts down germs and pathogens. Additionally, using clean cookstoves helps to reduces the risk of pneumonia.
“Pneumonia can be prevented and cured. Yet, for too long it has been the leading cause of global deaths among children. We know what to do, and we have made great progress – but we must do more. We must scale-up proven solutions and ensure they reach every child in need,” said United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.
How Can You Help?