Recent estimates published by UNICEF
show that the state of child mortality has improved significantly over the past two and a half decades. Since 1990 the number of under-five deaths has declined from 12.7 million to 6.3 million per year and yet the situation remains grim in some parts of the world.
While the child mortality rate in developing regions is very low (6 under-five deaths per 1,000 live births), children in developing regions are more than eight times as likely to die before reaching the age of five. Our chart illustrates that the situation is particularly bleak in Africa, where 12 nations still have under-five mortality rates of more than 100 deaths per 1,000 live births. Angola, Sierra Leone and Chad are the worst affected by child mortality with mortality rates of 167, 161 and 148 deaths per 1,000 live births, respectively.