Malnutrition killed 150 Gombe kids in 2017 — Official

At least 150 children were killed by malnutrition in Gombe state in 2017.
This happened while they were on treatment at Community Management for Acute Malnutrition Centres across the four operational local government areas in the state from.
The state’s Nutrition Officer, Suleiman Mamman, disclosed this in an interview with the Premium Times in Gombe yesterday.
Mamman said in 2017, 14,143 malnourished children across the four Community Management of Acute Malnutrition (CMAM) centres in the state; Gombe, Dukku Nafada and Kaltungo local government areas were admitted and out of that number, 13,069 were treated and discharged.
He said 710 children defaulted and were not able to continue with the treatment for reasons best known to their parents; 150 children died while on treatment and 214 children were not treated because of one complication or the other.
The coordinator said the children who were not cured, were treated for eight months but there was no improvement.
He said most of them had HIV/Aids and were referred to various hospitals across he states to receive treatment.
Meanwhile, the Commissioner for Health, Kennedy Ishaya, has disclosed that the state “is among the eight states in the country to secure loans from the World Bank to address malnutrition.”
He said the state government had concluded “plans to reactivate all nutrition clinics in all the health facilities in the state, beginning with the State Specialist Hospital, which only needs to be boosted up.”
The commissioner said with the growing indices of malnutrition in the country, coupled with crises in the North-east and North-central (Nigeria’s Food Basket), “there is a looming danger of food crisis next year if urgent steps are not taken to address issues capable of affecting food production negatively.”
According to him, an office has already been set up to that effect with a project manager, who will also serve as the state’s focal person, to be appointed soon.
Ishaya said the challenge in Nigeria was not the absence of food, but “lack of knowledge on the correct mix to the abundant food available in the country.”
He gave the assurance that the Ministry “will look into the issue closely and cooperate with the organisation through cordial partnership in addressing malnutrition.”

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