Cuba closed 2019 with a 5.0 infant mortality rate per 1,000 live births, placing the Caribbean island among the 35 best in the world in this regard, president Miguel Diaz-Canel wrote today on Twitter.
The president quotes figures provided by the Directorate of Medical Records and Health Statistics, according to which 109,707 children were born on Cuban soil in 2019; 6,626 less than the previous year, with a mortality rate also ranking the country among the top in the region.
In this regard, the Cuban health minister, Jose Angel Portal, stated that despite the difficult times that Cuba went through 2019, due to the U.S. economic, commercial and financial blockade, the nation shows a huge commitment to children's health.
At the same time, Dr. Noemi Causa Palma, director of medical care at the Ministry of Public Health, said that for the third consecutive year, the infant mortality rate due to congenital malformations has been maintained at 0.8 deaths per 1,000 live births, highlighting Cienfuegos and Sancti Spiritus provinces and the special municipality of the Isle of Youth.
This indicator is the best in the Americas, and is the result of the work carried out by the community genetics services, the development of the national medical genetics network, as well as the national program for the prevention of congenital malformation and genetic diseases, she explained.
By 2020, Causa Palma added, these are key targets in maternal and child health care, increasing multisectoral actions aimed at reducing adolescent pregnancy and modifying the risks for women of childbearing age, such as obesity, high blood pressure and diabetes mellitus, among others.
This Cuban health achievement is comparable to those reached in first-world nations such as Denmark, Germany and Austria, according to the World Health Organization's website.