Drowning has caused over 2.5 million deaths in the last decade. The overwhelming majority of these deaths (90%) happen in low- and middle-income countries. Globally, the highest drowning rates occur among children aged 1–4 years, followed by children aged 5–9 years.
The human, social and economic toll of these losses is intolerably high, and entirely preventable.
In 2023, the 76th World Health Assembly adopted its first ever resolution on drowning prevention. The resolution accepts the invitation of the United Nations General Assembly for WHO to coordinate actions within the UN system on drowning prevention and facilitate the observance of World Drowning Prevention Day on 25 July each year.
To mark this year’s World Drowning Prevention Day, PAHO will continue to focus on raising awareness on drowning as a public health issue, reminding people that anyone can drown, but no one should.
We are also raising awareness on the six evidence-based, low-cost drowning prevention interventions that countries and organizations can use to drastically reduce the risk of drowning. These include:
236.000 people die from drowning every year. 2.5 million deaths over the past decade.
90% of these deaths happen in low- and middle-income countries.
virtual celebration of World Drowning Prevention Day.
This virtual event will connect governments, UN agencies, civil society organizations, and other global drowning prevention partners to share and celebrate global achievements in drowning prevention from the past year.
This celebration will provide an opportunity to:
Reflect on World Drowning Prevention Day 2023 activities and events from around the world.
Hear updates from global partners on innovative, cross-cutting approaches taken to reducing drowning in a range of countries.
Share recent achievements in global drowning prevention, including the adoption of the first-ever World Health Assembly Resolution on Drowning Prevention, the establishment of the WHO Global Alliance for Drowning Prevention, and the launch of the first Investment Case for Drowning Prevention.