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Insecurity along the riverine area blamed for high malnutrition

Insecurity along the riverine area of Turkana South which has forced residents out of their farms has been identified as the cause for the high percentage of acute malnutrition in the sub county.

A SMART survey conducted in January 2023 in the seven sub-counties indicated a reduction of cases of severe acute malnutrition compared to how the situation was a few months ago.

In a presentation to health stakeholders, County Deputy Director for Family Health Gabriel Lopodo, said Turkana South has the highest levels of malnutrition at 35.2 per cent while Turkana West was at 20.3 per cent.

The presentation was made during a two-day meeting, supported by USAID Imarisha Jamii, to discuss the various drought emergency mitigation and responses, on health concept and primary healthcare (PHC) agenda.

According to Lopodo, the main objective of the meeting, organized by the County Department of Health and Sanitation, is to enhance better understanding of the drought situation in the county, so as to identify a way forward to accelerate responses coupled with the one health concept and PHC agenda.

Lopodo added that one of the report’s recommendations included exhaustive mass screening in all hot spots to ensure all malnourished women and children access treatment in all service delivery points.

Speaking on behalf of the County Executive Committee Member of Health and Sanitation, Director of Partnerships Nancy Kinyonge said the county government was in full support of one health concept and is collaborating with partners to strengthen it alongside primary healthcare.

AMREF’s Country Director, Meshack Ndirangu, lauded the partnership between the County Government and the private sector on primary healthcare, and assured of their commitment towards achievement of Universal Health Coverage.

The meeting also provided a platform for USAID Imarisha Jamii to get feedback and insights from other stakeholders on its drought mitigation and response Program and PHC Agenda.

Other partners present for the meeting were World Vision Kenya, Pan Africare Kenya, Save the Children, LOKADO, Diocese of Lodwar and AIC Health Ministries.

By Peter Gitonga

 

 

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