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Guatemala creates an interactive panel as part of the active search for children with acute malnutrition

  |   SUN Country Network, SUN Donor Network

In the context of the Great National Crusade for Nutrition, the Secretariat of Food and Nutritional Security (SESAN) is making an interactive panel available to the Guatemalan population, and particularly to decision-makers, giving the results of the active search for children with acute malnutrition and other nutrition actions, in the context of the COVID-19 emergency.

The tool has been created in conjunction with the National Nutrition Information Platform (PiNN) that is being implemented by the Tropical Agricultural Research and Higher Education Centre (CATIE) with the financial support of the European Union in Guatemala. It contains information generated by the Ministry of Public Health and Social Assistance (MSPAS) on the basis of data from the active search being conducted nationally by teams from the institution and others supported by national and international cooperation.

Eduardo Say, coordinator of the PiNN Project (CATIE/EU), explained that, in line with the project itself, this activity will improve national malnutrition monitoring capacity: “We have established a visualization tool for data coming from the active search for cases of acute malnutrition.  An analysis of the field data gathered is key for decision-making and case follow-up at the departmental and municipal level.”

The Active Search for Cases of Acute Malnutrition teams are a national inter-institutional coordination effort led by MSPAS and SESAN.  The aim is to provide treatment for children under 5 years of age who are diagnosed with moderate or severe acute malnutrition using the Mid-Arm Circumference (MAC) method; depending on the child’s condition, nutritional advice is provided, along with Ready-to-Use Therapeutic Food (RUTF); vitamin A; and vitamin and mineral sprinkles.

The panel can be accessed via the portal of the National Food Security and Nutrition Information System / SIINSAN (http://www.siinsan.gob.gt) under the Acute Malnutrition tab. It contains three main sections: The first, with the preliminary results of the active search by department / municipality, the number of children registered in the search, and statistics on children who are at risk of death due to acute malnutrition in the moderate, severe and normal nutritional status categories.

The interactive map in the Field Operations section shows the number of active teams supporting the MSPAC and financed by private donors and international cooperation, together with the municipality and department in which they are conducting their search for cases of acute malnutrition.

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