20 December 2012

Ghana: Northern Region Makes Progress in Reversing Acute Malnutrition Cases

Dr. Akwasi Twumasi, Northern Regional Director of Ghana Health Service, has expressed gratitude to development partners for helping to reduce acute malnutrition cases, paving the way for many children to grow healthier.

He said acute malnutrition cases in the region dropped from 21 per cent in 2011 to 18.3 per cent in 2012, while children born with low birth weight had also seen a decrease from 10.3 per cent in 2010 to 9.5 in 2011, and 8.7 per cent in 2012.

Dr. Twumasi explained that the drop in the number of cases was a result of many factors, including the assistance of non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and other development partners, who had supplied supplementary drugs to improve upon the nutritional status of children below the age of five.

He was speaking in Tamale on Tuesday, during the presentation of assorted drugs by the Christian Children's Fund of Canada (CCFC), an NGO interested in pursuing programmes to address the needs of children in deprived communities.

The organisation used the opportunity to present drugs, including abendazole, ferrous sulphate, vitamin A supplement and multivitamins to children.

Dr. Twumasi said the drugs would contribute to the improvement of malnutrition cases.

Mrs. Gifty Akosua Baka, Country Director of CCFC, said the donation was meant to assist children and pregnant mothers to be healthy, and empower them to achieve their dreams.

She said the mission of CCFC was to pursue the interest of children by providing services to enhance education, healthcare, nutrition, water and sanitation.

She said UNICEF estimates that 11 million children under the age of five in developing countries die from illnesses such as diarrhoea, dehydration, acute respiratory infections, measles and malaria.

Mrs. Baka appealed to the government to make the procedure of securing drugs at the ports tax free to enable NGOs and other charitable organisations play their roles in boosting health care.

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