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Leveraging Community-based Platforms to Strengthen the Prevention and Treatment of Child Wasting in Mali and Chad

Health Education Research
International Food Policy Research Institute
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Wasting is a persistent public health problem affecting 45.4 million children under the age of five worldwide. It is responsible for the deaths of 875,000 children every year. Those who survive often suffer long-term damage to their cognitive and physical development. Member countries of the World Health Assembly (WHA) have agreed to reduce and maintain the prevalence of wasting to less than 5% by 2025. However, most Sahelian countries are off track to meet the WHA targets. This includes Mali and Chad, where the national rates of wasting are still unacceptably high at 9.3% and 14%.

While both wasting prevention and wasting treatment programs hold the potential to reduce child wasting, substantial synergies can be expected when prevention is integrated with screening, referral, and treatment services. Such integration should happen at the community level to maximize the accessibility of services for caregivers and their children.

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This blog was made possible by a grant from the Implementer-Led Design, Evidence, Analysis and Learning (IDEAL) Activity. The IDEAL Small Grants Program is made possible by the generous support and contribution of the American people through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).