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Infant mortality rate increases against the background of falling birth rate

March 12, 2024

The infant mortality rate has risen again to 5.7 per 1,000 live births, up from 5.2 the previous year, as the birth rate plummets, the Save the Children Organisation says.According to the organization, the highest infant mortality rate is recorded in Salaj county - 10.5 per thousand live births, and the lowest in Bucharest municipality - 2.5 per thousand, which shows the huge disparities that exist in the country. Thus, the infant mortality rate in Salaj is 5 times higher than in Bucharest."The increase in infant mortality comes against the background of a fall in the birth rate. Thus, we have a number of 178,233 newborns, compared to 193,191 - in 2021 and 206,826 - in 2020," says Save the Children.According to the final data of the National Institute of Statistics (INS), the infant mortality rate in 2022 preserves the major discrepancies between the counties of the country.Top counties with high infant mortality rate are: Salaj - 10.5 per thousandlive births; Mehedinti - 8.8 per thousand; Braila - 8.3 per thousand; Hunedoara - 8.3 per thousand; Mures - 7.8 per thousand; Suceava - 7.8 per thousand live births.The lowest infant mortality rate is recorded in: Bucharest - 2.5 per thousand live births; Ilfov - 3.3 per thousand; Alba - 3.6 per thousand; Ialomita - 3.9 per thousand; Cluj - 4.5 per thousand; Tulcea - 4.7 per thousand.The high infant mortality rate comes amidst an accelerating birth rate decline.Counties with few births are Mehedinti - 1,470; Tulcea - 1,475; Caras-Severin - 1,850; Covasna - 1,954. Conversely, the counties with the highest number of births are: Cluj - 6,624 births, Timis - 6,630, Suceava - 7,903, Iasi - 8,937, and Bucharest with 18,644 births.Since 2010 and until now, Save the Children has equipped 122 medical units (neonatology wards, neonatal intensive care, paediatrics and obstetrics and gynaecology wards) in all counties of the country with over 1,700 vital equipment, investing over 10 million euros. In 2023 alone, Save the Children has equipped more than 55 medical units with state-of-the-art equipment, ensuring survival and adequate treatment for at least 40,000 children.    

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