Over a million of under-5s could succumb to preventable causes within the next six months as long as the brewing Covid-19 epidemic keeps weakening countries they dwell in, UNICEF and Johns Hopkins believe.

The gruesome prediction came after Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health looked at how the coronavirus crisis could impact 118 low- or middle-income countries around the globe.

Johns Hopkins researchers, who published their study in the renowned Lancet magazine, suggest the worst-case scenario could see an additional 1.2 million children under five years of age die in half a year – if life-saving health services became disrupted due to the fight against Covid-19.

The dramatic count amounts for 6,000 child deaths per day, as the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) pointed out. It would add to the 2.5 million children who already die within the same period of time and in the same 118 countries before they turn five.

Even the least severe scenario predicts that an estimated 1,400 children would die a day, it warned. Commenting on the appalling figures, UNICEF said Covid-19 already affects medical supply chains, while visits to hospitals decline due to lockdowns and transport disruptions.

UNICEF leadership have already sounded alarm on the back of Johns Hopkins’ predictions. “Under a worst-case scenario, the global number of children dying before their fifth birthdays could increase for the first time in decades,” said UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore.

We must not let mothers and children become collateral damage in the fight against #COVID19.

The world community “must not let mothers and children become collateral damage in the fight against the virus,” she argued.

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