In its stride to combat malnutrition among children aged 0-14 years old, the Department of Health (DOH) -10 has urged the families to avail themselves of free vitamins, micro nutrient supplements, vaccines, immunization and services in government health centers regionwide.
During the “Talakayan sa PIA” last April 11 here, DOH-10 presented its nationwide strategy in supporting micronutrient supplementation dubbed “Garantisadong Pambata,” an intervention to combat malnutrition in the country.
Dr. Grace Sicat of DOH-10 said that children who are malnourished are either underweight or overweight and they easily get sick.
Reports issued by the National Nutrition Council (NNC) showed that in region 10 the prevalence of underweight and severely underweight from zero to 71 months old has decreased from 6.66 to 5.72 beginning 2013 to 2015. Meanwhile, overweight has also decreased from 1.17 to 0.80 from 2013-2015.
Although the statistics is showing a downtrend, the annual weight/height/length taking of NNC aims to identify malnourished children in the community to be given appropriate intervention.
Sicat further said inadequate dietary intake, household food insecurity, unhealthy household environment and poor health services, disease and inadequate care could lead to maternal and child undernutrition and even death.
In 2016, there is a 2.01 rate (184 out of 91,754 live births) of perinatal deaths in the region and 12.28 Under-Five Mortality Rate (UFMR) (1127 out of 91,754 live births).
Telesfora Madelo, on the other hand, explained why the DOH is conducting training and information caravans particularly to mothers on how to take care of their young against malnutrition.
She said pregnant women should seek help from a midwife or doctor, follow proper procedure to take care of newborn, provide exclusive breastmilk to infants zero to six months old, complete vaccination of children and pregnant, give vitamin A and deworm children every six months, teach the kids proper to wash their hands and brush their teeth properly. (JMOR/PIA10)