“Universal Health Coverage (UHC)” as the theme for the 2018 world health day celebration means that all people receive the health services they need without suffering financial hardship. UHC is to be achieved by the year 2030 as part of the sustainable development goals (SDGs). UHC will result in reduction in the prevalence of epidemics, poverty, hunger and increase in quality of life, life expectancy and economic growth. Achieving UHC cannot be a done overnight but all countries need to take appropriate steps to hasten it.
Pneumonia is the highest cause of death in children under five (5) especially in sub-Saharan Africa. It accounts for 16 % of all deaths in Africa, deadlier than Malaria. Sub-Saharan Africa carries about half of the burden of the world’s under-five deaths. Progress in the fight against pneumonia has slacked behind that of the others. Pneumonia mortality rates in children have fallen by just 50 per cent compared to an 85 per cent decline in measles deaths, and 60 per cent in deaths from malaria, AIDS and tetanus in the last 15 years. The global funding to address the burden of pneumonia in children is low and this is potentially hindering the effort to reduce the mortalities associated with the disease.