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Last modified on Wednesday, 04 September 2013 18:00

Experts call for urgent Action to address Malnutrition

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05 September 2013, Dhaka. Nutrition experts, healthcare providers and others concerned at a discussion on Wednesday stressed urgent action to address the country's current malnutrition situation.

BRAC, a non-government organization, arranged the event at BRAC Centre, chaired by Sir Fazle Hasan Abed, its founding chairperson.

At the discussion titled 'Scaling up nutrition: An urgent call for commitment and multi-sectoral action', Sir Fazle said a combined approach is essential to address the issue. A strong focus on nutrition education and promotion by the highest government authority of the movement called Scaling Up Nutrition, SUN in short, should be integral part of the combined approach, he added.

'BRAC has been working in the nutrition sector for many years. However, the progress Bangladesh has  so far made is not enough,' he remarked.

Kaosar Afsana, director of BRAC Health, Nutrition and Population Programme , gave the welcome speech at the discussion also addressed, among others, by  Dr Tahmeed Ahmed, director of Centre for Nutrition and Food Security, ICCDR,B,  Sarah Cook, head of DFID, Dr Rukhsana Haider, chairperson of Civil Society Alliance for SUN, Nasima Begum, additional secretary of the government social welfare department. Representatives from UNICEF, WHO, FAO, EU and World Bank were also present.      

'We cannot accept that 53,000 children die each year from preventable complications resulting from chronic malnutrition,' said Dr Kaosar Afsana. She also emphasized cost-effective interventions to address the issue.

Dr Rukhsana Haider called for including nutrition components in development interventions in the country.

The speakers also viewed that knowledge sharing, collaboration and multi-ministry-based approach can highly contribute to addressing the issue.

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