New Low Birth Weight and Preterm Birth Estimates: Know what they are and how to use them

Children born too soon or too small are at the highest risk of dying in utero, during birth and in the neonatal period, and also have increased health and development risks throughout their lifetime. Of the 2.5 million neonatal deaths in 2018, over 80% were born too small–of which two-thirds were preterm and one third were small for gestational age (SGA). To understand the full burden of children born too soon or too small, The Lancet Global Health has published two sets of estimates – for preterm birth (PTB) and low birth weight (LBW).

This brief presents the new global estimates and outlines why and how they can be used.

Published 2020-08-06