Do you know almost 3 million newborns die worldwide every year? Do you know the most common causes of these infant deaths are infection, prematurity and birth asphyxia (when a baby’s brain gets little or no oxygen before, during or immediately after birth)?
It’s well known that hand washing is crucial in the prevention of transmitting illness-causing organisms during medical procedures and otherwise. Unfortunately, many healthcare providers frequently disregard this practice.
I’m sort of an obsessed hand washer. The first thing I do when my kids enter a bathroom, come in from the outdoors or from the car is begin my “wash your hands” crusade. I get a lot of eye rolls as you can imagine, but I persist. I’ve grown used to the proceeding lecture by my 18-year old son, indicating my hand washing routines actually work against nature, but I persevere.
That said, it’s hard for me to understand how an intervention as basic as hand washing can be forgotten or ignored. Proper hand washing alone can significantly reduce the number of infections and provide newborns with a greater chance of survival during the first month of life.
The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is leading the charge to raise awareness for the newborn health agenda by partnering with USAID’s Maternal and Child Health Integrated Program (MCHIP), Save the Children’s Saving Newborn Lives (SNL) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) to host a four-day conference. The Global Newborn Health Conference will be hosted in Johannesburg, South Africa, April 15 – 18, 2013. Learn more about the conference here.
Learn more about global newborn health at Impatient Optimists.
Join us to become part of the conversation. Help spread newborn health facts by following the Twitter hashtag #newborn2013 and following Dr. Gary Darmstadt at @gdarmsta and the Gates Foundation @gatesfoundation.
Retweet newborn health facts to your own twitter followers. Find great tweets by @SocialGoodMoms, ready to be retweeted directly from the blog post at: http://mombloggersforsocialgood.com/2013/04/17/our-round-up-of-newborn2013-tweets/.
You can also retweet directly from this post:
Conversations matter. Fantastic to see discussion on mother and newborn health led by moms themselves. http://t.co/GLMkolhpzr #Newborn2013
— Melinda Gates (@melindagates) April 15, 2013