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World Leaders Should Commit To Closing Health Care Worker Gap

Recent U.N. statistics showing a drop in child mortality are both good and bad, because the number of child deaths continues to drop, but “progress isn’t reaching all families around the world, and it isn’t reaching newborn babies as often as older children,” Joy Lawn, director of Global Evidence and Policy for Save the Children’s Saving Newborn Lives program, writes in a GlobalPost opinion piece. While the knowledge and technology exist to save lives, “too often, there is simply no one equipped to deliver basic lifesaving care to families who need it most. More than anything else, babies and children die for lack of frontline health workers,” she writes.

“World leaders meeting at the United Nations this week should … make concrete commitments to address the health worker gap,” Lawn says, concluding, “Last year, many of them signed onto Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s ‘Every Woman Every Child’ strategy to dramatically reduce maternal and child deaths. Without more and better-equipped health workers that won’t happen” (9/19).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.