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Infant mortality in Armenia down over last five years

11:12, 30.04.2012 Region: Armenia Theme: Society

YEREVAN. – The National Statistical Service and the Ministry of Health of Armenia presented at a local seminar Monday the key findings of the 2010 Armenia Demographic and Health Survey (ADHS).  The funding for the ADHS was provided by the US Agency for International Development (USAID), with in-kind contributions from the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), and the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS).   The seminar was attended by representatives of the Armenian government, international organizations, local health institutions, and NGOs.

The ADHS is a nation-wide household survey, which analyzes demographic information on key health issues and challenges, and the country’s progress in addressing them. The study provides essential data, which will enable decision-makers to formulate evidence-based policies and plan for appropriate financial commitments.  The 2010 ADHS interviewed 5,922 women, ages 15-49, and 1,584 men, ages 15-49, in over 7,000 households throughout Armenia.  The survey covered fertility and family planning issues, maternal health, child health and nutrition, childhood mortality, health care service utilization, as well as knowledge and behavior regardi ng HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs). 

The 2010 ADHS is the third of its kind and was implemented by the National Statistical Service and the Armenian Ministry of Health from October-December 2010.  ICF International provided technical assistance through MEASURE DHS, a USAID-funded project that provides support and technical assistance in the implementation of population and health surveys worldwide.

Key Findings:

According to the ADHS, infant mortality in Armenia has dropped over the last five years from 26 to 13 deaths per 1,000 live births.  The number of Armenian children ages 18-29 months, fully vaccinated according to the World Health Organization and the Armenian Ministry of Health standards, has also increased from 74 percent to 87 percent since 2005.  At the same time, nearly 19 percent of children under five experience stunted growth or are too short for their age due to chronic malnutrition, while 15 percent of their peers are overweight.  The survey revealed an average of 1.7 children per woman, which has remained consistent over the last decade.  The ADHS also noted a considerable decrease in payments for child delivery services (from 82% to 8%) after the introduction of state vouchers in July 2008, entitling pregnant women to receive free delivery care.

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