Supporting Malnutrition Case Finding Efforts in Machinga
The DAPP Nutrition Screening project in Machinga district is in its second year of implementation. The project continues to implement the activities but with limitations due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Active case finding through screening of under 5 children is currently not taking place to avoid physical contact and the risk of contracting and spreading the coronavirus which was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organisation in March 2020.
However, field officers are still working with health facilities to ensure that children who were identified as malnourished are receiving therapeutic and supplementary food supplies. Apart from patient follow-ups, the project is also civic-educating the community on hygiene practices for the prevention of COVID-19 infections and what to do if they suspect possible infections in their families.
“We have managed to visit some of the children who are receiving the supplementary food and they are showing signs of improvement, unfortunately we cannot asses their nutrition status because we are avoiding contact,” said Shyreen Malunga the Project Coordinator.
The Ministry of Health through Nyambi and Mkwepere Health Centres provides therapeutic peanut butter to undernourished children while DAPP Malawi supplements the families with supplies like cooking oil and kidney beans.
On 27 March and 27 April 2020, the project made a distribution of the food supplies to 100 families; 50 families at Mkwepere and 50 at Nyambi Health Centre respectively.
The project is being implemented in Traditional Authority Nyambi and targets to directly reach 1,000 pregnant and lactating mothers and over 30,000 people indirectly.
The Screening, Care and Nutrition for the Management of Severe and Moderate Malnutrition in Children Aged 0 to 2 Years project is financed by the Valdese Church through Humana People to People Italia.