From "The State of the World's Children 1988" by the United Nations Children's Fund:

The handful of major threats to the lives and growth of the world's children could now be defeated, in large measure, by the emergence of a body of scientific information which almost all parents can act upon, and which all governments could afford to facilitate even in the difficult economic times of the late 20th century. At the same time, it has also become clear that putting this information at the disposal of all parents, and supporting them in using it, can only be achieved if a Grand Alliance of all possible social resources is mobilized to do it.

Five years ago, UNICEF said that if this "social breakthrough" could be added to the "knowledge breakthroughs" . . . then it would be possible to drastically reduce child death and child malnutrition throughout the world over the next decade. The scale of that potential may be broadly grasped by looking at the tragic figures with which this report began -- the world-wide numbers of child deaths. In 1980, the death toll among the world's under-fives was approximately 43,000 per day. In 1987, that figure has been reduced to approximately 38,000 per day. And by 1990, it could and should be reduced to 33,000 per day or fewer. In other words, the potential of the child survival and development revolution, over the decade of the 1980s, is the daily saving of over 10,000 young lives.

The world is well started on the way to realizing this extraordinary potential. Basic low-cost measures such as oral rehydration therapy and immunization are already saving the lives of approximately 5,000 young children each day. But protecting the lives and the normal physical and mental growth of many millions of the world's children will remain a priority task for the remainder of this century.