Despite major strides in improving the health of the population over the last decade, the Ethiopian people still face high rates of death and disease. Ethiopia has the second largest population of any country in sub-Saharan Africa—estimated at approximately 104 million. Forty five percent are under the age of 15 and 80 percent live in rural areas.
About 350,000 children die each year and more than 90 percent of these deaths are due to preventable or treatable causes such as pneumonia, diarrhea, malaria, malnutrition and HIV/AIDS. Ninety percent of births occur without the assistance of a skilled health professional, and as a result, approximately 19,000 new mothers die each year.
Ethiopia has one of the world’s highest rates of maternal deaths and disabilities in the world. Women have a one-in-52 chance of dying from childbirth-related causes each year. Every year, more than 257,000 children under the age of five die and 120,000 die in the neonatal period. More than 60 percent of infant and 40 percent of under-five deaths in Ethiopia are neonatal deaths. We work with the Ethiopian government to reduce maternal, neonatal, and child mortality rates. We support integrated packages of evidence-based interventions delivered across a continuum of care at family, community and facility levels by increasing availability of services like skilled birth attendance and essential newborn care/treatment—especially to underserved populations.