Malnourished Madagascar Children Struggle Despite Treatment

It is estimated that more than a million people face hunger in the country's worst drought in decades. An immediate and massive increase in food aid is urgently needed for  the region, says Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF). MSF has set up mobile clinics in 17 locations across southern Madagascar. Given the situation, deforestation, sandstorms, etc, providing treatment for malnutrition is just not enough. Food must be distributed too.

People in southern Madagascar are experiencing an exceptionally acute food and nutrition crisis that is leaving thousands of children severely ill and pushing entire families into extreme poverty. Since March 2021, MSF emergency teams have been setting up more and more mobile clinics to deliver humanitarian and medical assistance in several districts across the region. They have now begun distributing food and recently opened an inpatient therapeutic feeding centre in the hospital in the town of Ambovombe.

"We're seeing malnourished children struggling to regain weight after weeks of treatment in our mobile clinics. The medical care we provide and the half-rations different organisations have been distributing are not enough to reverse the trend in a setting where there is so little access to food. A massive increase in emergency food assistance is an absolute priority," says MSF's head of emergency programmes Bérengère Guais.

MSF is responding to a major nutritional crisis in Madagascar. Over 1 in 4 children in the area suffer from acute malnutrition.

Exploratory mission led by MSF to respond to the on-going nutritional crisis in Madagascar. In Fokontane (villages) Andrambaly I et Andrambaly II, in the municipality of Maheny, Beloha's distict, Androy's region, the teams set up a mobile clinic for children under five. They carry out nutritional screening and distribute Plumpy'nut (therapeutic food) rations for children suffering from severe acute malnutrition.

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