Good health is a basic requirement for living well, but many people in Bolivia suffer and/or die too early from preventable causes.
For example, while the maternal mortality rate in Bolivia has been falling steadily, from 334 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births in 2000 to 206 in 2015, this rate is still several times higher than in neighbouring countries, and three times higher than the global target for 2030 (less than 70 deaths per 100,000 live births)1. Infant mortality rates have also been falling, from 58.5 infants dying before reaching one year of age per 1,000 live births in 2000 to 29.5 in 2016. However, this rate is also high compared to other countries in Latin America.
It is also important to note that the composition of diseases is changing rapidly in Bolivia. In 1990, Bolivia’s disease burden was dominated by infectious diseases and maternal health problems, which is typical of poor countries. By 2016, however, rich-country diseases associated with old age (e.g. cardiovascular diseases, cancer, diabetes and mental disorders) have become dominant2.
While the Bolivian government has comprehensive systems and programs in place to reduce maternal and child mortality, large parts of the remaining population groups have limited access to health services.