TWENTY thousand babies are born in Fiji each year and the Ministry of Health records one death out of every five newborns annually.
These were some of the revelations made by the ministry's National Adviser on Non Communicable Diseases (NCD) Dr Isimeli Tukana as he launched the children's playhouse at the Maternal Child Health Clinic at Namosi House in Toorak, Suva yesterday.
Dr Tukana reiterated it was the ministry's vision to create a baby-friendly hospital and nurture the future generation of the country.
He said children needed to be properly taken care of in the first five years of their life because this was when their brain was developing.
"Whatever the child sees and hears in this period is what they perceive as the truth and the absolute truth," Dr Tukana said.
He said during the development stages, a child was very smart and if he or she saw that parents were swearing, smoking and drinking, they would think this was normal.
Dr Tukana said the playhouse at the Maternal Child Health Clinic would develop the games of wellness as children developed in the early stages of their life.
He said the newly-opened playhouse would benefit children in their breathing, eating, drinking, physically and mentally.