Maternal & Neonatal Tetanus

A woman is vaccinated against tetanus at a health outreach centre in the village of Kakail Chew in the eastern Ajmeriganj Subdistrict in Bangladesh.

Tetanus is an excruciating disease that kills one newborn every eleven minutes, or approximately 134 babies each day. Typically contracted through unhygienic childbirth practices, the disease is swift, cruel and lethal.

But it is also highly preventable. An affordable vaccine given to women of childbearing age can stop tetanus.

Since 1999, UNICEF and its partners have immunized more than 118 million women in 50 countries and have eliminated the disease in 35 countries. But maternal and neonatal tetanus remains a public health threat in 24 countries. The women and newborns most at risk live in areas scarred by poverty, poor medical infrastructure or humanitarian crises.

facts about MNT