Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — Children and new mothers will receive Vitamin A supplements as part of Micronutrient Day celebrations, the National Institute of Nutrition said.
The supplements will be provided to children between six and 60 months of age in 22 provinces with high stunting rate as well as children aged between 6-36 months old in the remaining 41 provinces and cities on Micronutrient Day, which falls on June 1 and 2.
The institute’s director Lê Danh Tuyên said Vitamin A supplements will also be given to new mothers and children under high malnutrition risk, such as those with severe malnutrition, prolonged diarrhea, acute respiratory infection, and measles.
In addition, children from 24 to 60 months in 22 provinces and cities that have a high rate of stunted growth will be dewormed. Communication and education efforts will strengthen awareness about nutrition and nutritional requirements, and encourage good eating practices among people, Tuyên said.
“Việt Nam has made remarkable strides in addressing the malnutrition problem, especially among children under 5,” he said. “Low weight and malnutrition have gone down rapidly and sustainably from 30.1 per cent in 2000 to 14.1 per cent in 2015 and 13.8 per cent in 2016."
However, Tuyên said Việt Nam still faced many challenges, such as the stunted growth rate of children under the age of five, which remained high at 24.3 per cent in 2016. The number of malnourished children differs across the country, with high rates of malnutrition being recorded in the Central Highlands and northern mountainous areas. Meanwhile, obesity is on the rise in urban areas.
Micronutrient deficiency prevention is one of the six important tasks of the National Nutrition Strategy for the 2010-20 period, which puts focus on comprehensive measures, including providing micronutrients for high-risk groups as immediate solution, adding micronutrients in food as a medium-term solution, and diversification of daily meals as a way to reduce micronutrient deficiency in a sustainable and long-term way. — VNS