According to the United Nation’s Children’s Fund (UNICEF), repercussions from the coronavirus outbreak is leading to the death of 10,000 children a month.
UNICEF says 50% of the deaths are occurring in Sub-Sahara Africa, an area already inflicted with food shortages. With shutdowns and food sales decreasing, farmers are experiencing additional challenges to get their crops to the market. As a result, UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore says the repercussions of the pandemic are causing more harm to children than the disease itself.
“It’s been seven months since the first COVID-19 cases were reported and it is increasingly clear that the repercussions of the pandemic are causing more harm to children than the disease itself. Household poverty and food insecurity rates have increased.”
“Essential nutrition services and supply chains have been disrupted. Food prices have soared,” Fore said Monday. “As a result, the quality of children’s diets has gone down and malnutrition rates will go up.”
#COVID19 is disrupting food supplies and confronting us all with a harsh reality: 10,000 more children could die from malnutrition every month this year.
We must act now to ensure every child has access to affordable and nutritious food. It’s time to lift children up. pic.twitter.com/zJx2tVxZkt
— UNICEF (@UNICEF) July 28, 2020
A report by The Lancelet estimates that the increases in child malnutrition along with diseases in health services caused by the COVID-19 outbreak will account for over 120,000 additional deaths in children over the next year.