Health situation and trend assessment

MDG 4: Child health

Under-five mortality

Target: Reduce by two thirds between 1990 and 2015

The under-five mortality rate is the probability of a newborn child dying by age five expressed in terms of the number of such deaths per 1000 live births. Included in these deaths are infant deaths (those occurring during the first year of life) and child deaths (those occurring between the 1st and 5th birthday).

The indicator measures child survival and reflects the social, economic, health care and environmental conditions in which children live, play and grow.

Situation in SEAR

Three countries in the Region have already achieved their 2015 targets, four are on track to achieve by 2015 if their current rates of progress on this indicator continue. Of the remaining four countries (Bbutan, Indonesia, Sri Lanka and Thailand) Sri Lanka and Thailand already had a low baseline level of under-five mortality and that may have been the reason for the slow rate in further decline, but Bhutan and Indonesia seem to have had slow progress and need to accelerate their rates of progress in order to close the gap between what is expected by 2015 at their current rate of progress and the 2015 targets. In terms of percentage of the target value this gap for these coutries is 34% and 8% rspectively. It is also noted in the data series of this indicator that upward trend lately in U5MR in Bhutan could be due to change in the recent survey methodology.