The New York Times reports:
The number of children dying before their fifth birthdays each year has fallen below nine million for the first time on record, a significant milestone in the global effort to improve children’s chances of survival, particularly in the developing world, according to data that Unicef will release on Thursday.
The child mortality rate has declined by more than a quarter in the last two decades — to 65 per 1,000 live births last year from 90 in 1990 — in large part because of the widening distribution of relatively inexpensive technologies, like measles vaccines and anti-malaria mosquito nets.
This is why the efforts of Africa Fighting Malaria and Not Evil, Just Wrong to replace insecticide-treated nets with less effective means are so pernicious. There is real progress being made and these folks advocate going back to using 1940s technology to fight malaria, just so they can bash environmentalists.