Pakistan is among the top five countries where 99 percent pneumonia cases exist. It is estimated that seven million cases of pneumonia occur in Pakistan, killing 92,000 children yearly before they reach their fifth birthdays. This infection is very lethal, because of which 85 out of 1,000 children die under the age of five.
It is unfortunate that most of these deaths occur due to vaccine-preventable diseases, pneumonia being one of them. This deadly disease is caused by bacteria of fungi found in a child’s nose or throat, and it can even infect lungs if inhaled. One of its reasons can be the decrease in the practice of breast-feeding; reportedly, 40 percent women in Pakistan use bottle milk to feed their children, which is also one of the causes of infection.
A simple way to get rid of the killer disease is that we must wash our hands with anti-germ soaps. Moreover, lady health workers can play a key role to educate every mother/parent about pneumonia. It is hoped that before the disease affects more children government would ensure that steps are taken to prevent the dangerous infection.
Gul Jan Abrahim
Published in The Balochistan Point on February 8, 2017