The Lancet is known for being a champion of global health and for its contribution to publishing the most authoritative global health science. At its core The Lancetbelieves in a world where healthcare is equitable and just and where every individual has the right to the highest attainable standard of care. But what does this admirable principle mean in practice? How does The Lancet influence health agendas and global policies? How does it make a difference?
A recent example of this commitment in action was the publication of The Lancet’sEvery Newborn Series, a series that relies on research from around the world to potentially save the lives of millions of mothers and their babies.
5.5 million babies each year die without ever receiving a birth or death certificate. 2.9 million of these babies die within their first month of life—1 million on their birthday—and 2.6 million are stillborn. Almost all of these deaths are from preventable causes.
“The fact that they don’t have those birth or death certificates is not just a failing in data or in systems,” said Professor Joy Lawn, Director of the MARCH Centre at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. “It suggests that the world doesn’t count them, and the world isn’t acting to change that.”