Malnutrition Rates On The Rise In Karamoja Sub Region

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In short
Emmanuel Owiny, a nutritionist working with Doctors in Africa explains that the number of underfed children in Karamoja region is still high because the region is hard hit by famine.

The rate of malnutrition among children in districts in Karamoja sub region has reached alarming levels, a new report by UNICEF and World Food Program has revealed. The most affected are Napak, Nakapiripirit, Moroto and Kaabong districts. The report is compiled from the food security and nutrition assessment conducted in the region between July and August, 2015.
 
It shows that about 16 of every 100 children need supplementary feeding. Moroto District has the highest number of malnourished children needing supplementary feeding at 18. 3 percent followed by Napak with 16.2 percent and Kaabong with 15.7 percent. The report also shows that several children in the affected districts have stunted growth and are underweight due to poor feeding habits.

The report further says that two thirds representing 67 percent of the households in Karamoja are food insecure and barely manage 1 meal a day. It further says only 14 percent of the children meet the minimum acceptable diet. Emmanuel Owiny, a nutritionist working with Doctors in Africa explains that the number of underfed children in Karamoja region is still high because the region is hard hit by famine.

 

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Although the report says food security has marginally improved since 2014, Global Acute Malnutrition has deteriorated to the highest levels since 2010.

Global Acute Malnutrition is a measurement of the nutritional status of children between children of 6 to 59 months compared to a healthy population.

According to Margaret Nakuya, a nutritionist with Community Action for Health, a nonprofit organization in Kotido district, almost 4000 children are put on special diet in the district every month.

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Because of the prevalence of Global Acute Malnutrition in the four districts, many development partners have come on board with interventions aimed at rehabilitating the affected children. All the health centers IIIs in Kotido district currently handle referral cases of malnourished children.

Lokol Lorukoi,  a casual worker and a mother of a severely malnourished 2 - year - old - child says she usually goes on an empty stomach since she cannot provide for herself.

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