Rivers State Government Takes Action to Address Escalating Malnutrition Issue

The Rivers State Government has taken significant steps to combat the increasing problem of malnutrition in the state by establishing Integrative Management of Acute Malnutrition (IMAM) centers.

The centers will focus on treating malnourished children under the age of five.

Speaking during the launch at the Kelsey Harrison Hospital in Port Harcourt, the Commissioner of Health, Dr. Adaeze Oreh, revealed that one in nine children under the age of five in the state suffer from stunted growth. This is attributed to poor infant and early child feeding practices, with only 26% of children in the state being exclusively breastfed as recommended.

Dr. Oreh stated that healthcare providers have undergone training to identify cases of malnutrition in different local government areas and administer appropriate therapy promptly.

The Commissioner emphasized the commitment of the state government to ensure that at least 60% of children are in good health by 2025. The establishment of IMAM centers will play a crucial role in the proper management and treatment of malnutrition. These centers will provide various long-term interventions such as nutrition education, infant and young child feeding, and addressing food security.

The launch of the IMAM sites was commended by Beatrice Ali, speaking on behalf of the Director, Head of Department Federal Ministry of Health and Social Welfare. Ali expressed gratitude to the Rivers State Government for their dedication and commitment to combating acute malnutrition in the state.

During the event, the wife of the Rivers State Governor, Valerie Fubara, inaugurated the IMAM sites and was honored as the state’s nutrition champion by the Commissioner of Health.

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