Myanmar – health profile

Myanmar (also known as Burma) is one of the poorest countries in Southeast Asia, after years political and economic mismanagement along with international isolation. There is more hope today since former political prisoner and human rights activist, Aung San Kyi, won a political majority in 2015.  With this country opening up to the rest of the world, World Vision has recently started operating in Myanmar.

History has left the country’s general state of health is in poor shape. Even today, Myanmar’s government spends less than 3 percent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product on healthcare, less than any other country in the world. Canada spends 11 percent of its GDP on healthcare.

Thabuang Township – 1000 Day Journey focus area

Thabuang Township is located in the massive Ayeyarwaddy River delta at the Andaman Sea. The area is extremely remote – the township’s 400 villages are accessible only by boat during the May to September rainy season.

According to a 2015 survey, maternal mortality is 237 deaths per 100,000 live births. Child malnutrition is also high with 41 percent of children under age five exhibiting stunting. Interestingly, due in part to the Burmese culture, gender-disaggregated data shows little difference between men and women in health status. But women’s voices are not well represented in decisions made about healthcare. 1000 Day Journey will help build women’s leadership capacity in remote villages.