Govt must scale up nutrition services in PHCs — Beatrice Eluaka

By  Gabriel Olawale

The Civil Society Scaling up Nutrition in Nigeria, CS-SUNN has urged the Federal, State, and local governments to scale-up nutrition provision of basic package of nutrition services across Primary Health care centres in Nigeria.

Executive Secretary, CS-SUNN, Beatrice Eluaka identified the need for massive sensitisation, education and awareness creation to provoke behavioural changes that will promote adequate Infant and Young Child feeding practices in Nigeria,

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“Every individual needs to be sensitised on the importance of early initiation of breastfeeding, exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life and adequate complementary feeding. We urge Nigerians to diversify their diet and to ensure adequate nutrition by consuming a wide range of foods, including vegetables, proteins, and fruits to improve their nutritional status.

Eluaka who made the call during a media roundtable on Micro-Nutrient Deficiency Control in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Health and Ministry of Agriculture said CS-SUNN had supported some State Committees on Food and Nutrition including the Lagos State Committee on Food and Nutrition to develop and cost their plans.

“We again urge states without budget lines for nutrition to create such and ensure releases with specific funds allotted to interventions around micronutrient powder, biofortification, iron folate supplementation, and Vitamin A supplementation among others.

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“We also underscore the need to strengthen multisectoral coordination across institutional structures documented in the National Policy for Food and Nutrition to address the causes of MNDC and the need for promotion of the production of biofortified crops among Nigerian farmers, to ensure availability for consumption among Nigerians.

Some of these measures, if in place will reduce the incidence of micronutrient deficiencies and contribute to improving nutrition outcomes in Nigeria.”

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