Cases of malnutrition on children rife in Karnali Province


July 8, 2022


Cases of malnutrition on children rife in Karnali Province

Image for Representation.

JAJARKOT: The cases of malnutrition on children in Karnali Province are rampant in recent years.

A total of 20,092 children were admitted in 654 hospitals in the Province within the current fiscal year 2021/20, according to Karnali Health Directorate.

The Province having 10 districts recorded highest cases of malnutrition in Dailekh (578 cases) district followed by Surkhet (400 cases) and Mugu (91cases).

Apart from malnutrition, cases of anemia, stunting and low weight on birth were also recorded in children in Kalikot, Jajarkot and Mugu district.

According to Kalpana Rokaya, health worker in health post in Barekot Limsa in Jajarkot, two children died due to malnutrition in Jajarkot last fiscal year.

Similarly, Karnali Province Hospital’s senior pediatrician Dr Nawaraj KC asserted that malnutrition could not be alleviated until poverty is eradicated.

According to him, babies born to younger mothers weigh only one or two kilograms. “Malnutrition related cases were growing since mothers are unable to breastfeed their newborns on time,” he shared.

A total of 55 per cent children below five years were suffering from under-nutrition, over-nutrition, malnutrition, under weight, obesity, stunting and wasting among others.

Malnourished children and newborns apart, 166 new mothers died in lack of timely treatment in the Province over nine years, the statistics of the Directorate revealed.

The federal government introduced Multi-sectoral Nutrition Plan in fiscal year 2015/16 in Karnali zone with an objective to make all local levels nutrition-friendly by 2030.

The federal government also allocated Rs 190 million for nutrition related porgrams and projects for 79 local levels in Karnali Province for 2020/21, according to the Directorate.

The budget is being mobilized for distributing nutritional foods, launching awareness drive on nutrition and sanitation among others.