Championing the fight to stop pneumonia

Pneumonia is the world’s biggest infectious killer – claiming 2.5 million lives, including 672,000 children under five, in 2019 alone.

That’s one person dying every 13 seconds. Yet pneumonia remains a neglected disease – a “global cause without champions”.

COVID-19 will add 3.6 million to the death toll in 2021, bringing the total number of respiratory infection deaths to more than 6 million. No other infection causes this burden of death.

Unless we take action now to reduce pneumonia deaths, and the risk of further respiratory infection pandemics, millions more adults and children will die from pneumonia over the next decade.

The Every Breath Counts Coalition

The Every Breath Counts Coalition is the world’s first public-private partnership supporting low- and middle-income countries to reduce pneumonia deaths, including from COVID-19.

The global coalition of UN agencies, businesses, donors, academic institutions and NGOs have committed to supporting governments in countries with some of the highest burden of pneumonia. The members provide support to close the critical gaps in pneumonia prevention, diagnosis and treatment, which could save hundreds of thousands of lives each year.

Read more about the coalition

World Pneumonia Day

World Pneumonia Day, marked every year on 12 November, was established by the Stop Pneumonia Initiative in 2009 to raise awareness about the toll of pneumonia – a leading killer of children around the world – and to advocate for global action to protect against, help prevent and effectively treat this deadly illness.

Read more about World Pneumonia Day 2022

News & updates

New global data, in-country success stories, op-eds from experts. You can find it all here.

Latest posts
  • How do we reduce inappropriate use of antibiotics for the treatment of pneumonia and close any remaining access gaps for pneumonia patients, especially children, who are missing out?

  • The 2nd Global Forum on Childhood Pneumonia will build on the momentum for action generated by the 1st Forum in 2020, and pivot political attention from COVID-19 to government action needed to reduce child pneumonia deaths.

  • Access to oxygen can be a matter of life or death. Read Barun's story - he has experienced the direct impact of oxygen access.

  • There is growing evidence that pulse oximeters do not work effectively on darker skin tones. This is unacceptable. Every Breath Counts has launched a petition to change this.

  • The deaths of 1.63 million children under five could be prevented by 2030 with one of the most powerful pneumonia-fighting vaccines - the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV)

  • It is the very young and the very old living in a handful of countries who are at greatest risk of air pollution-related death.