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Brazil Reduces Infant Mortality to 24 Deaths per 1000

Brazil has achieved the 2007 year-end infant mortality target of 25 deaths per 1000 live births a year ahead of schedule. The figure currently stands at 24 deaths per 1000.

This information was presented by the coordinator of the steering committee of the Presidential Friend of Children Plan, Amarildo Baesso, who reported last Thursday, June 8, on the Plan’s activities in 2005.

According to Baesso, there was also progress in education, despite the many challenges that remain to be met. "97% of school-age children attend school; nevertheless, we face problems related to the quality of education," he remarked.

Baesso observed that, in addition to providing an accounting, the report offers a means of discussing new government policies. "We are developing family and community relationship projects that involve adoption and shelters for children and adolescents. That is because there are policy gaps in this area," he affirmed.

The Presidential Friend of Children Plan began in 2003 in response to a societal demand for ways to improve the living conditions of Brazilian children and adolescents. This is the third report on the Plan’s activities.

Vaccination

Using the slogan "Your Child Wants Two Small Drops of Your Attention," the Ministry of Health, on Saturday, June 10, carried out the first phase of the National Vaccination Campaign against Child Paralysis.

The government’s goal is to inoculate more than 17 million children between the ages of 0 and 5. To attain this coverage, 340 thousand health professionals and volunteers were assigned to work in 117 thousand vaccination posts scattered throughout the country.

The target is for each state to achieve a minimum of 95% vaccination coverage in at least 80% of the municipalities.

The ministry bought 26.6 million doses of vaccine altogether. A second stage of the campaign is scheduled for August 26.

Agência Brasil

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