In the Netherlands, the number of babies born stillborn each year has fallen sharply in the past two decades. However, the number has increased south of the Sahara in Africa, UNICEF reports on an international basis on Thursday research.
In the year 2000, more than a thousand babies were still born in the Netherlands, compared to 400 last year. This makes the Netherlands one of the countries that has made the most progress in proportion.
According to UNICEF, this is partly due to various policy measures, but also because more attention is paid to vulnerable pregnant women and a healthy lifestyle.
At least 84 percent of lifeless births take place in the poorer regions such as in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, largely due to poor care. For example, things often go wrong during childbirth, while in the West this is only the case with 6 percent of stillborn babies.
Globally, the stillbirth rate went down by 35 percent. Nearly 2 million babies are stillborn each year, the report shows. That’s one baby every 16 seconds, UNICEF said in the report. According to the UN organization, the problem has never been mapped out on such a large scale.
It is feared that the corona crisis will increase the number of lifeless births in the coming year if access to healthcare continues to deteriorate.