About 50% of infant, maternal deaths malnutrition-related, says Kwara commissioner

Tue, Jul 9, 2024
By editor


THE Kwara Commissioner for Health, Dr Amina El-Imam, on Tuesday in Ilorin, said about 50 per cent of infant and maternal deaths in the country malnutrition-related.

She said this at the opening of a five-day training of Maternal Infant Young Child Nutrition (MIYCN) Training of Trainers (ToT) in Ilorin.

The training was organised by Federal Ministry of Health and Social Welfare (FMoHSW) and the Kwara Ministry of Health, with support of the World Bank (ANRiN project) for state level ToT.

The commissioner said that the training is expected to increase the pool of trainers for stepdown of training to health facilities in the state.

She added that “inadequate nutrition has far-reaching implications on children and the nation at large.

“The provision of adequate nutrition during pregnancy, breastfeeding, infancy and early childhood remains an important means of addressing malnutrition, thus promoting optimum growth, health and behaviour of mother and child.

“The first 1,000 days, that is, from conception to a child’s second birthday is recognised as critical period during which adequate nutrition should be provided for growth, development and attainment of full potential.”

El-Imam explained that developmental delays, impaired educational ability, a lifetime of poor health, increased risk of chronic diseases and early death are some of the effects of malnutrition.

She, therefore, stressed the need to equip health workers with required knowledge and competence for
result-oriented Maternal Infant and Child Nutrition (MIYCN) counselling and support to mothers and children.

She noted that with such knowledge, it would be easy to implement the laudable MIYCN policy, which is a roadmap to improving maternal and child nutrition indices.

Dr Oluwatosin Fakayode, the Director, Public Health, Kwara Ministry of Health, described high level infant under-five and maternal mortality figure as “unacceptable.

“Our health indices remain unacceptably high, particularly the infant under-five and maternal
mortality figures. The major cause of this is under-nutrition, called poor nutrition.

“When you look at the causes of maternal, newborn and under-five deaths, the ones that are
related to malnutrition account for about 50 per cent. So, when you solve problem of nutrition, you can reduce death rate.”

Fakayode explained that “this training is, therefore, aimed at increasing the knowledge base of healthcare workers in the state, as well as the attitude and practice of mothers, pregnant women and adolescent girls.”(NAN)


July 09, 2024 @ 17:14 GMT|