Prevalence of low birthweight in Asia and the Pacific by subregion
Low birthweight is defined as a baby who weighs less than 2.5 kilograms at birth – and can refer to babies born at term or pre-term. Low birthweight is a risk factor for neonatal mortality and illness, with more than 80 percent of neonatal deaths occurring in low birthweight infants. The prevalence of low birthweight in Asia and the Pacific was 17.8 percent in 2015, higher than the global average of 14.6 percent. The prevalence of low birthweight is the highest in Southern Asia, with 26.4 percent, followed by 12.3 percent in South-eastern Asia, 9.9 percent in Oceania excluding Australia and New Zealand and 5.1 percent in Eastern Asia. Most countries have made progress since 2000, with several countries reducing the prevalence by more than 3 percentage points: Bangladesh, Cambodia, the Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Maldives, Nepal and Thailand.
|Asia and the Pacific||27.0||25.0||23.4||22.8||22.3||22.1|
|Oceania excluding Australia and New Zealand||10.4||10.2||10.1||10.0||9.9||9.9|