12 December 2017
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Monday, 04 December 2017 14:25

Parents and care givers urged to patronize health week

Written by  Tione Andsen
Minister of Health, Atupele Muluzi addresses members of press on 2017 Child Days Campaign at Capital Hill, Lilongwe - Pic by Abel Ikiloni Minister of Health, Atupele Muluzi addresses members of press on 2017 Child Days Campaign at Capital Hill, Lilongwe - Pic by Abel Ikiloni

Lilongwe, December 4, 2017: Government has appealed to parents and care givers to patronize the Child Health Week by bringing their children for Vitamin A supplements and deworming campaign exercise.

Minister of Health, Atupele Muluzi made the appeal Monday when he launched the second series of Child Health Days for 2017. 

“The biannual Child Health Days (CHDs) will help us access hard to reach groups with effective support services. The second round of the Child Health Days for 2017 will run from December 4 to 8, 2017. This will run in all districts across the country within health facilities and other community health clinics,” he said.

Muluzi said the campaign is extremely important because children receive Vitamin A supplements and deworming tablets.

The Minister said focus would be on providing parents supplementary Vitamin A and de-worming tablets for their children as well as a screening service to identify malnutrition.

He noted that the past exercise produced tangible results where children were provided with the supplements and deworming tablets.

Muluzi pointed out that children from 0 to 59 months are supposed to access the facilities in all the districts throughout the country.

“ We will be conducting workshops that will help parents better understand how to feed their children better, the need for use of insecticide treated nets and the importance of upholding high levels of hygiene and sanitation,” the minister explained. 

 

Muluzi urged the media to support disseminating details of the campaign through different forms of communication so that communities are made aware of the exercise.

United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) representative, Johannes Wedenig, commended government for demonstrating best practice to the region and to the world in the reduction of prevalence of Vitamin deficiency in children under five from 59 per cent in 2001 to 3.6 per cent in 2017 for the period of 15 years.

“One of the key interventions for addressing vitamin A deficiency is the Child Health Days campaigns such as the one being launched today,” said.

Wedenig noted that despite the achievements which have been made, the country still faces high prevalence of stunting which stands at 37 per cent even though it is on a downward trend.

“Stunting is responsible for massive and irreversible mental retardation and low economic productivity of populations worldwide,” he added.

The UNICEF representative said his organization commits continued support to the government in addressing stunting and other conditions which affect the health and welfare of children in order to meet Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Malawi Growth and Development Strategy (MGDS III).

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