Table of Contents

HK J Paediatr (New Series)
Vol 2. No. 2, 1997

HK J Paediatr (New Series) 1997;2:116-122

Feature Article

Child Health Priorities in the 21st Century with Special Concern for Asia



The health problems of the world are changing; if current trends continue, the global importance of communicable diseases and malnutrition will decrease, and non-communicable diseases and injury will have assumed a far greater importance. However, for children, the projected distribution of causes of death will be much the same in 2020 as it was in 1990. The burden of ill health among children will continue to be dominated by diseases of under-development. The major causes of child deaths are acute respiratory infection, diarrhoea, measles, malaria, and malnutrition. This article addresses the five major life-threatening conditions, as well as perinatal/neonatal mortality, child mortality and HIV/AIDS, and additional health problems related to the consequences of urbanisation and changing lifestyles, and suggests what might be the priorities in dealing with them. It must be remembered that the five conditions mentioned above are a direct cause of 55% of all childhood mortality; this sad state is likely to remain so in 2020 unless action is taken now.


Keyword : Burden of ill health; Child abuse; Child health; Childhood HIV/AIDS; Communicable diseases; Genetic disorder; Lifestyle change; Malnutrition; Mortality; Noncommunicable diseases; Perinatal and neonatal: Priority: Urbanisation; Violence


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