6 Reduce child mortality

Where we are?

A mother and baby at Dili's Bairo Pite clinic
A mother and baby at Dili's Bairo Pite clinic: Sandra Magno/UNDP TL

In the past decade, Timor-Leste has significantly reduced both its infant mortality rate and its under-five mortality rate, achieving its infant and under-5 mortality targets for this goal.Infant mortality dropped from 60 to 45 deaths per 1000 live births. The under-five mortality rate decreased from 83 to 64 deaths per 1000 live births.

Measles, a major cause of death in children, is also being tackled with increasing numbers of children being vaccinated against the disease. In 2001 approximately half of all one year-old children were immunised against measles. This figure rose to 68 per cent in 2009. Full childhood vaccination has nearly tripled from 18 per cent in 2003 to 53 per cent in 2009.

What needs to be done

  • Better health-sector policies related to maternal, newborn and child health services 
  • Policy attention and programming in delayed birth spacing and high fertility
  • Access to essential obstetric care and treatment of common childhood killer diseases
  • Empower mothers to seek appropriate care and care-givers to provide improved caring
  • More health-promotion facilities, paramedics and doctors
  • Increased availability of essential medicines, vaccines, birth control and effective health services in every district hospital
  • Educating young women about pregnancy from conception through to delivery and the postpartum period

Sources: 2009 The Millennium Development Goals, Timor-Leste, RDTL and UN; Millennium Development Goals 2010, RDTL, National Statistics Directorate, Ministry of Finance and ICF Macro, 2010; 2009-10 Timor-Leste Demographic and Health Survey: Key Findings, Dili, Timor-Leste, NCD and ICF Macro; Timor-Leste MDG-F Case Study Evaluation, 2012.  

UNDP's work in Timor-Leste

  • Ivo Valente, Vice-Minister for Justice, receives a traditional welcome at the start of a community outreach meeting in Laclo, Manatuto. Photo Christine Kearney/UNDP TL

    Dancing to the tune of a better-informed citizenry

    Dili – For people living in rural Timor-Leste, access to news and information is extremely limited. Internet access is patchy and expensive, radio and TV aremore

Targets for MDG4
  1. Reduce by two thirds the mortality rate among children under five
    • Under-five mortality rate
    • Infant mortality rate
    • Proportion of 1 year-old children immunised against measles