Karol Gives Poverty A Stern Talking To travel blog


The film "Welcome to the World: The Lottery of Birth" examines the infancy of children born in the nations of Sierra Leone, Cambodia, and the United States. The film compares these nations and shows that even though Sierra Leone and Cambodia are two of the poorest nations in the world, expectedly having high death rates in small children, the United States are experiencing the highest infant death rates in twenty years. In Sierra Leone, most of the money is made illegally and the nation is experiencing corruption and poverty as a result of its diamond industry and consequently the natural resource curse. Despite money being made, almost none of it goes to the people. Cambodia likewise faces bleak circumstances as most children are born into families making less than one dollar per day. Not only are such children lacking of opportunity to thrive, they also lack necessary healthcare to keep them healthy. Bad government, healthcare, and education all contribute to the hardships which Cambodia and Sierra Leone are facing. In the United States, healthcare and education are the greatest concerns surrounding the well being of children.

Though the United States have its struggles, they cannot even be compared on the same level as a nation like Cambodia. Economic statistics between the United States and Cambodia leave no question as to why the USA is a thriving third world nation and Cambodia a struggling third world nation. According to Nationmaster.org, Cambodia's GDP is estimated at around $39 billion, while the United States' GDP is roughly $13 trillion. This is about 335 times higher than Cambodia's. The comparison of GDP per capita of the two nations tells a similar story. GDP per capita in the United States is $44,000 while in Cambodia the number is $2,700. Such stark differences in the economic situations of the two nations make it easy to see why Cambodia struggles and the United States thrive, more or less.

Like the economic statistics of the two nations, the comparison between health statistics again illustrates the drastic differences between the two nations. Maternal death, for example, is much higher in Cambodia than in the United States. In fact, the maternal death in Cambodia is 440 per 100,000 while in the United states it is only 8 per 100,000.

Clearly the healthcare in Cambodia is lacking, and even that undermines the problem. In Cambodia, there are only 0.5 hospital beds per 1,000 people and only 0.16 physicians per 1,000 people. In the United States, these statistics are 3.5 per 1,000 and 2.2 per 1,000 respectively. The issue doesn't only lie in the hands of hospitals and physicians in Cambodia because while in the united States drug access is 95%, in Cambodia it is a startling 0%. This means that Cambodia has no access to essential medications. If such was available, thousands, even millions of lives could be spared rather than lost as a result of the simple lack of resources.

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