October 17, 2012

Chelsea Clinton’s daughter in Nigeria for child health initiative

ABUJA (AFP) – Chelsea Clinton was in Nigeria on Tuesday to help launch an initiative linked to her father’s foundation aimed at reducing deaths of children and mothers due to diarrhea and other preventable diseases.

The daughter of former US president Bill Clinton and current US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton helped launch the programme in the capital Abuja along with Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan and others.

Chelsea Clinton is a board member of the Clinton Health Access Initiative.

“An estimated one million mothers and children die each year in Nigeria from preventable diseases, including 100,000 deaths due to diarrhea,” a statement from the Clinton Foundation said.

A range of companies and organisations have signed on to the effort that will mainly focus on increasing access to zinc and oral rehydration solutions (ORS), which the foundation said was “the most effective diarrhea treatment.”

“Increasing the percent of children with diarrhea who receive ORS and zinc to 80 percent by 2015 could help prevent 220,000 Nigerian children from dying,” it said.

“Zinc and ORS can prevent over 90 percent of diarrhea-related deaths and cost less than $0.50, yet less than two percent of children in the country are currently using the complete treatment.”

Nigeria Africa’s most populous nation and largest oil producer, but most residents live on less than $2 per day.