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Time to Rid the World of Anemia

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A lack of enough healthy red blood cells or hemoglobin leads to anemia. Around a quarter of the world population, including a significant number of children, are affected by this condition.

According to a World Bank data of 2011, 43 percent of children aged five and below were affected by anemia around the world. However, when compared to 1990, the percentage had witnessed a decline. In 1990, the anemia was prevalent among 52 percent of the children around the world. Though some nations have combated anemia to a large extent, other nations have not been so successful.

Anemia is widely prevalent in the African continent with Burkina Faso being the most badly affected. According to the World Bank data, anemia was prevalent among 86 percent of children aged under five in Burkina Faso. In fact, majority of the countries at the top of the list — barring two nations — were located in Africa where more than 60 percent of children aged five were affected by anemia.

Among the regions, South Asia was the second most badly affected by anemia. The region, on an average, witnessed 58 percent of the children aged five and under, affected by anemia. While Pakistan reported a high figure with 61 percent, nations such as Sri Lanka and Maldives were better of at 36 and 30 percent respectively.

Children are leading much healthy lives in European and North American countries, which reported very low percentages of 16 percent and 7 percent respectively. Among the World Bank list, the United States reported the lowest figure, with just 6 percent of the children aged five and below affected by anemia.

Country Anemia (%)
Burkina Faso 86
Mali 80
Senegal 79
Ghana 76
Guinea 76
Niger 76
Cote d’Ivoire 75
Sierra Leone 74
Chad 74
Central African Republic 72
Liberia 72
Guinea-Bissau 71
Togo 71
Nigeria 71
Mauritania 71
Congo, Dem. Rep. 67
Mozambique 67
Equatorial Guinea 66
Malawi 66
Benin 65
Congo, Rep. 65
Gambia, The 65
Cameroon 63
Haiti 62
Pakistan 61
Tanzania 61
Cabo Verde 61
Gabon 60
Yemen, Rep. 59
Eritrea 59
India 59
Zimbabwe 59
Sudan 59
Sao Tome and Principe 59
Zambia 58
Somalia 57
Uganda 56
Bolivia 56
Bangladesh 56
Bhutan 55
Cambodia 55
Angola 52
Comoros 51
Nepal 51
Madagascar 50
Ethiopia 50
Namibia 49
Lesotho 48
Guatemala 47
Burundi 47
Kenya 46
Egypt, Arab Rep. 45
Timor-Leste 45
Papua New Guinea 44
Afghanistan 44
Swaziland 44
Arab World 44
Mauritius 44
Uzbekistan 43
World 43
Djibouti 43
Botswana 43
Lao PDR 42
Guyana 41
St. Lucia 41
Oman 41
South Africa 41
Solomon Islands 40
Myanmar 40
Ecuador 40
Grenada 40
Honduras 40
Saudi Arabia 39
Trinidad and Tobago 39
Suriname 39
IBRD only 39
Antigua and Barbuda 39
Vanuatu 38
St. Vincent and the Grenadines 38
Rwanda 38
Seychelles 37
Barbados 37
Kiribati 37
Syrian Arab Republic 37
Dominica 37
Tonga 36
Sri Lanka 36
Iraq 36
Kyrgyz Republic 36
Caribbean small states 36
Morocco 36
Azerbaijan 35
Belize 35
Philippines 35
Armenia 34
Micronesia, Fed. Sts. 34
Korea, Dem. People’s Rep. 34
Cuba 34
Dominican Republic 33
Peru 33
Bahamas, The 33
Costa Rica 33
Marshall Islands 33
Fiji 33
Indonesia 33
Iran, Islamic Rep. 33
Algeria 32
Venezuela, RB 32
Samoa 32
Bahrain 32
Malaysia 32
Turkmenistan 32
Jamaica 32
Panama 32
Vietnam 31
Jordan 31
Libya 30
Turkey 30
Kazakhstan 30
Maldives 30
El Salvador 30
Thailand 30
Tunisia 30
United Arab Emirates 29
Moldova 29
Bosnia and Herzegovina 28
Colombia 28
Montenegro 27
Tajikistan 27
Bulgaria 27
Slovenia 27
Paraguay 27
Romania 27
Slovak Republic 27
Czech Republic 27
Croatia 27
Ukraine 27
Hungary 27
Georgia 27
Kuwait 26
Poland 26
Serbia 26
Mongolia 26
Lithuania 26
Mexico 26
Russian Federation 26
Latvia 26
Qatar 26
Estonia 26
Belarus 25
Lebanon 24
Brazil 24
Uruguay 24
Albania 22
Macedonia, FYR 22
Chile 21
Argentina 21
Singapore 19
Cyprus 19
Nicaragua 19
China 19
Brunei Darussalam 18
Australia 15
Israel 15
Japan 15
Greece 15
New Zealand 15
Korea, Rep. 15
Canada 14
Malta 14
Italy 14
Andorra 14
Norway 14
Switzerland 14
Germany 14
Spain 14
Ireland 14
Portugal 14
Austria 14
France 14
Netherlands 14
Denmark 14
Finland 14
Belgium 14
Iceland 14
Sweden 14
Luxembourg 13
United Kingdom 13
North America 7
United States 6

(Data sourced from World Bank)

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