Fewer than 45 per cent of births and just one in 10 deaths are registered in African countries, compared to the Europe and Americas, where 90 per cent of both are recorded.
That’s according to new data from the World Health Organization (WHO), in a first-of-its kind assessment of global health information systems.
Statistics from 133 countries (equating to 87 per cent of the global population) have been collated in the SCORE assessment, which was funded by Bloomberg Philanthropies.
Good health data and surveillance is an essential part of how public health decisions are made. Gaps leave policymakers ill equipped to detect and act on public health threats and, most recently, has hampered efforts to track and respond to the Covid-19 pandemic.