Australia will provide $5 million in aid to help prevent the deaths of mothers and children in Burma.
Foreign Minister Bob Carr said the money will fund a program of immunizations, pediatric and emergency pre-natal care for more than 320,000 mothers and newborns.
He said Burma has an infant death rate 10 times higher than in Australia. Around one in 14 Burmese children die before their fifth birthday, with the cause of death often a preventable condition like pneumonia, diarrhea or malaria.
“We will be working to save the lives of women and infants through immunization and medical supplies, and through funds for better delivery rooms in remote Myanmar villages,” said Carr, in a statement on Wednesday.
Carr said the aid will be delivered immediately to teams from the World Health Organisation and United Nations working with mothers and newborns in around 3,000 villages.