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WSSCC is pleased to be part of the international community that today, World Pneumonia Day 2012, is working to raise awareness of the impact of pneumonia particularly on children in developing countries.
Pneumonia is a form of acute respiratory infection that affects the lungs. According to the World Health Organization, pneumonia is the single largest cause of death in children worldwide. Every year, it kills an estimated 1.4 million children under the age of five, accounting for 18 percent of all deaths of children under five years old worldwide. There are a number of environmental risk factors that increase a child’s susceptibility to pneumonia, including poor sanitation.
Pneumonia and diarrhea have long been regarded as diseases of poverty and are closely associated with factors such as poor home environments, under nutrition, and lack of access to essential services. An integrated approach to tackle these two killers is essential, as many interventions for pneumonia and diarrhea are identical and could save countless children’s lives when delivered in a coordinated manner.
Click here to download the recent UNICEF report Pneumonia and Diarrhoea: Tackling the Deadliest Diseases for the World’s Poorest Children, 2012.
In addition to today's World Pneumonia Day, next week's World Toilet Day (19 November) is a good opportunity for WSSCC members and other concerned individuals to raise awareness of good sanitation and hygiene, and linked issues such as pneumonia.