Awareness stressed to check malnutrition

Kathmandu, June 9

Stakeholders have stressed the need for effective awareness campaign to reduce malnutrition in Nepal. As per the recent Nepal Demographic Health Survey 2016, seven out of 10 children in Nepal are still living with anemia.

Speaking at “Media Interaction on Nutrition and Food Security”, member of National Planning Commission Geeta Bhakta Joshi said effective advocacy and awareness was needed to reduce malnutrition. He appreciated the role of media in spreading awareness among the people.

“Media can explain about nutrition in an easy and effective way using the language that the people understand. They can also make recommendations to policy makers for making better policies,” Joshi said, adding, “Only doing better or launching policy and programmes is not enough, making people aware about nutrition and malnutrition is important.”

He expressed his hope that NPC, concerned ministries and media jointly could end all forms of hunger and malnutrition by 2030 as per the Sustainable Development Goals. NPC and seven line ministries are jointly working on nutrition and food security.

Head of Department of Community Medicine, IOM, Dr Madhu Devkota said the causes of malnutrition work at different levels: individual, family, community and society, and governance system.

“Malnutrition involves wide range of factors including diet and disease, food security, care practices,  and access to health services and environment. All levels of causes need to be simultaneously addressed for greater and sustainable impact,” she added.

Krishna Murari Neupane, program director at NPC Secretariat, said Nepal was progressing gradually in the field of nutrition and food security which was exposed by Nepal Demographic Health Survey, 2016.