Nutrition

Global Nutrition Targets 2025: Low birth weight policy brief

Authors:
World Health Organization

low birth weight policy brief cover

Publication details

Editors: World Health Organization
Number of pages: 8
Publication date: 2014
Languages: English (2014), French (2017), Spanish (2017)
WHO reference number: WHO/NMH/NHD/14.5

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Policy brief

Overview

Low birth weight is defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) as weight at birth less than 2500 g (5.5 lb). Low birth weight continues to be a significant public health problem globally and is associated with a range of both short- and long term consequences. Overall, it is estimated that 15% to 20% of all births worldwide are low birth weight, representing more than 20 million births a year.

The goal is to achieve a 30% reduction in the number of infants born with a weight lower than 2500 g by the year 2025. This would translate into a 3% relative reduction per year between 2012 and 2025 and a reduction from approximately 20 million to about 14 million infants with low weight at birth.

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