KADUNA, North-West, Nigeria – The National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), and the Civil Society-Scaling Up Nutrition in Nigeria, (CS-SUNN) on Monday have reiterated the commitments to eradicate malnutrition among Nigerians using minimum nutrition package.
The Operations and Technical Officer of NPHCDA, Cletus Ameh, stated this at the opening of a One-day training in Kaduna, that the move was to lay a strong foundation for improved standard of living of citizens.
Ameh said the training of Officers In-Charge of Primary Health Care centres on Minimum Nutrition Service Package, was part of efforts to ensure socioeconomic development of the nation.
According to him, malnutrition can affect the effectiveness of vaccines, saying the antibody response to immunization with vaccines can diminish owing to malnutrition.
He, however, said Minimum Service Package for Nutrition was developed to address malnutrition problems in the country.
The package, according to him, is intended for used by health workers, community workers, development partners and other stakeholders to build capacity for effective implementation of nutrition service delivery.
Ameh disclosed that the objective of Minimum Nutrition Service package was to reduce morbidity and mortality associated with malnutrition with a view to contributing socio-economic development.
In her own presentation, Kaduna State Nutrition Officer, (SNO), Ramatu Haruna, said the Growth Monitoring and Promotion, (GMP), was a prevention activity that monitors the growth of children in relation to malnutrition.
She said the growth measurement and interpretation would facilitate communication and interaction with caregivers on minimum nutrition package and proper care of children.
Earlier, Silas Ideva, CS-SUNN’s Coordinator in the state, NPHCDA in collaboration with CS-SUNN and key partners had developed guidelines on Minimum Nutrition Package in a functional PHC.
He said that NPHCDA along with CS-SUNN, had paid a courtesy visit to Kaduna State Ministry of Health and State Primary Health Care Board, and presented the document for their buy-in.
He, however, noted that training of health workers on current practices has not been conducted.
“This training, therefore, is necessary, given the high morbidity and mortality being recorded due to poor nutrition intake by women and children which was compounded by the outbreak of COVID-19,” he said.