Bangladesh has made significant strides in the reduction of the child mortality rate despite being one of the world’s poorest countries. In fact, it is on track for achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) 4 and 5, which aim to reduce underfive child and maternal mortality. In fact, Bangladesh is one of the ight countries which have reduced their under-five mortality rate by at least two-thirds since the 1990s. In Bangladesh, deaths of children under the age of five decreased from 139 per 1,000 live births in 1990 to 46 in 2011. In 1970, the country’s under-five mortality rate was even higher – 239. Maternal deaths have also plummeted from 800 per 100,000 live births in 1990 to 240 in 2010. Almost 200 health facilities in Bangladesh have received better training in emergency obstetric care since 2000.
Although the number of poor women who give birth at health facilities has increased considerably, more than 70 percent still deliver at home. There is still a dearth of hospitals and trained doctors, nurses, paramedics and midwives. It is especially hard to retain medical personnel in rural areas. However, recent figures show that Bangladesh’s child and maternal health statistics are better than those of India’s.