|Vitamin A capsule offered to a kid
Speaking at the ceremony, Deputy Minister of Health Nguyen Thanh Long said over the years, that the country and health sector in particular have paid attention to protecting and caring for people’s health, including prevention of malnutrition and micronutrient deficiency, especially for women and children.
Thus, the country has reaped significant achievements, as the rate of malnutrition in under-five children dropped to 13.8 percent in 2016. Vietnam has erased blindness due vitamin A deficiency and people’s awareness about micronutrient has been improved, Long added.
To tackle remaining challenges, he instructed People’s Committees of all provinces and centrally-run cities to effectively implement campaigns providing vitamin A supplements and treatment of helminth infection, ensuring that 98 percent of children receive the supplements during the campaign.
Communication campaigns should also be enhanced to encourage families to join concerted efforts in preventing malnutrition and micronutrient deficiency as well as ensuring food security, said the official.
According to Director of the National Institute of Nutrition Le Danh Tuyen, nearly 1 million under-five children have seen improvements in vitamin A deficiency each year thanks to the biannual provision of vitamin A supplements for children between 6 and 36 months old nationwide and for those between 37 and 60 months old in 22 disadvantaged provinces.
The provision of vitamin A for children and post-partum mothers has become an annual activity in more than 11,000 communes across the country.
This year, more than 6 million children under five years old will receive vitamin A capsules. In addition, millions of children between 24-60 months of age in disadvantaged localities will be dewormed.