Back to search

Programmatic adaptations to acute malnutrition screening and treatment during the COVID-19 pandemic

Maternal & Child Nutrition Wrabel, M., Strokes-Walters, R., King, S., Funnel, G., Stobaugh, H., 2022-8-05
Article on qualitative findings from a larger mixed methods study to document practitioners' operational experiences and lessons learned from these adaptations. To enable continued case identification and service delivery while minimising transmission risks, many organisations and governments implemented adaptations to community-based management of acute malnutrition (CMAM) programmes for children under 5. These included: Family mid-upper arm circumference (MUAC); modified admission and discharge criteria; modified dosage of therapeutic foods; and reduced frequency of follow-up visits. Findings reflect insights from 37 interviews representing 15 organisations in 17 countries, conducted between July 2020 and January 2021. Overall, interviewees indicated that adaptations were mostly well-accepted by staff, caregivers and communities. Family MUAC filled screening gaps linked to COVID-19 disruptions; however, challenges included long-term accuracy of caregiver measurements; implementing an intervention that could increase demand for inconsistent services; and limited guidance to monitor programme quality and impact. Modified admission and discharge criteria and modified dosage streamlined logistics and implementation with positive impacts on staff workload and caregiver understanding of the programme. Reduced frequency of visits enabled social distancing by minimising crowding at facilities and lessened caregivers' need to travel. Concerns remained about how adaptations impacted children's identification for and progress through treatment and programme outcomes. Most respondents anticipated reverting to standard protocols once transmission risks were mitigated. Further evidence, including multi-year programmatic data analysis and rigorous research, is needed in diverse contexts to understand adaptations' impacts, including how to ensure equity and mitigate unintended consequences.
  • COVID-19 Pandemic
  • Health
  • Nutrition
  • Africa
  • Asia
  • Bangladesh
  • Congo-Kinshasa (Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC))
  • East Africa
  • Ethiopia
  • Global
  • Horn of Africa
  • India
  • Jordan
  • Kenya
  • Malawi
  • Middle East
  • Myanmar
  • Nepal
  • Nigeria
  • Pakistan
  • Philippines
  • Somalia
  • South Asia
  • South Sudan
  • Southeast Asia
  • Sub-Saharan Africa
  • Tanzania (United Republic of)
  • Uganda
  • West Africa
  • Yemen
  • Low- and Middle-Income Countries (LMICs)
  • Children (boys and/or girls 1-10 years old)
  • Children <5 years old
  • Country-level population(s)
  • Research
  • Article
  • Journal article

Highlighted Sources

Protect the Promise: 2022 progress report on the every woman every child global strategy for women’s, children’s and adolescents’ health (2016–2030)

  • Advocacy
  • Research
  • Article
  • Brief
  • Report
  • COVID-19 Pandemic
  • Economic
  • Education
  • Food Insecurity
  • Gender and/or Agency
  • Health
  • Nutrition
  • Other Crises
  • Ukraine War
  • Women and/or Girls
2022-10-18
Article on a UN report which showed that women’s and children’s health has suffered globally, as the impacts of conflict, the COVID-19 pandemic and climate change converge with devastating effects on prospects for children, young people, and women. Data presented in the report show a critical regression across virtually every major measure of childhood wellbeing, and many key indicators of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Since the last Every Woman Every Child Progress Report published in 2020, food insecurity, hunger, child marriage, risks from intimate partner violence, and adolescent depression and anxiety have all increased. Advocacy brief and full report available. View Source

Poverty and shared prosperity 2022

  • Research
  • Report
  • Climate Shocks
  • COVID-19 Pandemic
  • Education
  • Health
  • Other Crises
  • Ukraine War
2022-11-15
Report on the first comprehensive look at global poverty in the aftermath of an extraordinary series of shocks to the global economy. The COVID pandemic increased the global extreme poverty rate to an estimated 9.3% in 2020—up from 8.4% in 2019. This indicates that more than 70 million people were pushed into extreme poverty by the end of 2020, increasing the global total to over 700 million. 2020 marked a historic turning point. The world’s poorest people bore the steepest costs of the pandemic. Incomes in the poorest countries fell much more than incomes in rich countries. As a result, the income losses of the world’s poorest were twice as high as the world’s richest, and global inequality rose for the first time in decades. The poorest also suffered disproportionately in many other areas that directly affect their well-being. For example, they faced large setbacks in health and education, with devastating consequences, including premature mortality and pronounced learning losses. This report offers new analysis on how fiscal policy was used during the first year of the pandemic. It also sheds light on the impact of taxes, transfers, and subsidies on poverty and inequality in 94 countries before 2020, providing important new insights into the impacts of fiscal policy—not only during crises but also during normal conditions. View Source

Assessing and mitigating the impact of shocks on food security and nutrition in the Asia Pacific region: Lessons from the COVID-19 response for informing the Global Food Crisis response

  • Policy
  • Research
  • Brief
  • Policy Guidance Document
  • Report
  • COVID-19 Pandemic
  • Economic
  • Food Insecurity
  • Health
  • Nutrition
  • Other Crises
  • Social Support and Protection
  • Ukraine War
  • Women and/or Girls
2022-7
Report on assessing and mitigating the impact of shocks on food security and nutrition in the Asia Pacific region to obtain lessons from the COVID-19 response for informing the Global Food Crises response. It lays out a series of studies undertaken by WFP and partners to better understand the realities of the food security and nutrition landscape since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in the region. These are based on experiences throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, where WFP has continually assessed household vulnerability to food and nutrition insecurity through monitoring surveys, while simultaneously providing technical assistance and operations support for programs in response to the pandemic in the Asia Pacific region. In addition to WFP’s food security monitoring reports and data made available from WFP’s Fill the Nutrient Gap analyses, this brief utilizes secondary data relevant to the crisis, as well as four documents recently published by WFP and its partners. While the focus of this brief is on the COVID-19 crisis, its lessons can be applied now and into the future. Other types of covariate shocks will create compounding problems for countries. View Source