Tackling the leading killers of the world’s poorest children
In a village in Cambodia, an anxious mother realizes her child needs medical care. In this rural area, chances are high that a sick toddler has either pneumonia or diarrheal disease—both of which can be deadly. The health facility is miles away, but this mother doesn’t have to travel hours for care. Thanks to PATH, village health workers are equipped with simple yet powerful tools for recognizing, preventing, and treating the two threats.
The deadly duo
Diarrheal disease and pneumonia are responsible for more than one-third of the deaths of children under age five. The vast majority of these deaths occur in areas with poor sanitary conditions, unsafe drinking water, and limited access to lifesaving treatment and prevention tools. PATH is tackling the deadly duo by emphasizing overlapping protection, scaling up proven methods, and developing innovative new tools to fill deadly gaps. For example, we’re making water safer, improving sanitation, and promoting good hygiene, nutrition, and breastfeeding.Through advocacy efforts, we’re also ensuring that diarrhea and pneumonia remain global health priorities.
Diarrheal disease: improving tools and access to them
For diarrhea, we’re improving access to proven solutions, like zinc and oral rehydration therapy, and advancing technologies to quickly diagnose the cause of illness and vaccines to protect against infections. Through research to improve current therapies and develop new medicines, we aim to help sick children have a better chance at recovery.
Pneumonia: easier diagnosis and effective vaccines
Pneumonia is particularly hard to identify, so PATH is empowering community health workers to diagnose and treat pneumonia with tools designed for their specific needs. We’re also advancing the next generation of affordable pneumococcal vaccines to protect against the most common cause of severe pneumonia—and to ensure accessibility for even the poorest children.No child should die of diarrhea or pneumonia. Our goal is to help kids in poor countries get the same world-class protection that most children in wealthy countries get. It is protection that every child deserves.
Photo: PATH/Heng Chivoan.
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