Falling Between Two Stools: Operational Inconsistencies between ICDS and NRHM in the Management of Severe Malnutrition
V PRASAD, D SINHA AND S SRIDHAR
INDIAN PEDIATRICS 181 VOLUME 49 MARCH 16, 2012
There has been a welcome interest in the issue of malnutrition by policy makers as well as technical experts in the recent years. The current public health systems for management of malnutrition, the ICDS and NRHM, have attempted to evolve approaches to the management of severe malnutrition. This paper makes a fresh analysis of data from well-accepted existing sources, indicating that 36- 44% of all children with Severe Acute Malnutrition (SAM) are likely to be missed by current criteria of screening and referral; simultaneously, a large proportion of children selected for referral to Nutritional rehabilitation centers are likely not to have SAM. The paper also highlights other areas of inconsistencies between the ICDS and the NRHM in the continuum of care required for the prevention and proper management of severe malnutrition. Thus, the paper identifies areas that need further exploration to achieve a seamless and effective program for tackling severe malnutrition.