Pneumonia and diarrhoea were primary causes of children under 5 deaths globally in 2016, according to a United Nations report.

Even more alarming is that nearly half of the deaths - 7,000 or 46 percent - died within the first 28 days of their life, the Levels and Trends in Child Mortality report shows.

Further, a significant finding is that while in general, deaths under 5 years of age have decreased and reached a new low - 5.6 milion in 2016 - compared to 9.9 million in 2000, the proportion of newborn deaths jumped from 41 to 46 percent nearly two decades later.
 
These newborn deaths occurred primarily in two regions, Southeast  Asia with 39 percent and sub-Saharan Africa with 38 percent. India accounted for 24 percent, Pakistan with 10 percent, Nigeria with 9 percent, Democratic Republic of Congo with 4 percent and Ethiopia with 3 percent.
 
Pneumonia (16 percent) and diarrhoea (8 percent) were the top causes of child deaths under five worldwide. Preterm birth complication and complications in labour and child birth caused about 30 percent. In addition to the death rate, about 2.5 million babies were also stillborn.
 
Moreover, of the 60 million children under five, half of them newborn, will die between now and 2030 - according to a report by the Inter-agency Group for Child Mortality Estimation, which include UNICEF, the World Health Organization, World Bank, and UNDESA Population Division. 
 
The report further highlighted that 50 million children have been saved since 2000, but progress will largely remain unchanged if no intervention in affected areas is done.
 
"Unless we do more to stop babies from from dying the day they are born, or days after their birth, this progress will remain incomplete. We have the knowledge and technologies that are required, we just need to take them where they are most needed," said Stefan Swartling Peterson, UNICEF Chief of Health.
 
In comparison, one child in 36 dies in sub-Saharan Africa during the first month, but the ratio is 1 in 333 in high-income countries.
 
According to the WHO, lifesaving interventions such as immunizations, breastfeeding, provision of inexpensive medicines, and increase in access to water and sanitation, as well as improving access to health professionals are necessary to prevent deaths. 
 
"Reducing inequities and reaching the SDG target on ending preventable childhood deaths and for ensuring that no one will be left behind," said UN Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs Mr Liu Zhenmin of their goals. MIMS