Taken from the Washington Post:
“It turns out that pencils and books for mothers might be as important as vaccines and drugs for babies in reducing child mortality in the developing world.
That’s because a mother’s education level has a huge, if indirect, effect on the health of her children. That relationship, observed in many small studies in rich countries, turns out to be true everywhere on the globe, according to a new study.
Half the reduction in child mortality over the past 40 years can be attributed to the better education of women, according to the analysis published in the journal Lancet. For every one-year increase in the average education of reproductive-age women, a country experienced a 9.5 percent decrease in child deaths.
“The effect of educational expansion on child health has been enormous,” wrote Emmanuela Gakidou, the lead author and a researcher at the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington.
Read the rest here.