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HealthPhone™: Part 3 - Severe Acute Malnutrition - Screening for Acute Malnutrition

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Screening for Acute Malnutrition

It is very important that your first assessments of children are done carefully.

You should take your time to do all the necessary steps during admission and keep appropriate records to enable smooth subsequent follow-up. mid-upper arm circumference and edema detection are the most appropriate techniques to be used to detect severe acute malnutrition in a health post context.

Weight is used to follow the progress of the admitted child, and decide when to discharge him or her.

Bilateral edema is a sign of severe malnutrition; children with edema need to be in therapeutic feeding programs immediately.

Only children with bilateral edema are recorded as having nutritional edema.

In order to determine the presence of edema, normal thumb pressure is applied to both feet for three seconds.

If a shallow print persists on both feet, then the child presents edema.

Mid-upper arm circumference is an alternative measure of severe acute malnutrition in children.

Take the following steps to measure the mid-upper arm circumference of a child:

Ask the mother to remove clothing that may cover the child's left arm.

If possible, the child should stand erect and sideways to the measurer estimate the midpoint of the left upper arm, straighten the child's arm, and wrap the tape around the arm at the midpoint. Make sure the numbers are right-side-up.

Make sure the tape is flat around the skin. Inspect the tension of the tape on the child's arm.

Make sure the tape has the proper tension and is not too tight or too loose.

When the tape is in the correct position on the arm, with correct tension, read and pull out the measurement to the nearest 0.1 cm.

Immediately record the measurement.

Once you have determined that the child has severe acute malnutrition, you must check to make sure that they do not have additional complications and can be treated at your OTP.

Video Details

Duration: 2 minutes and 3 seconds
Year: 2009
Country: Ethiopia
Language: English
Producer: Federal Ministry of Health and UNICEF, Ethiopia
Views: 1,668
Posted by: nand on Feb 12, 2012

Intended for Health Extension Workers (HEW) on how to do screening for malnutrition, how to identify Severe Acute Malnutrition cases; and how to conduct Out-Patient Therapeutic Programme for SAM in order to maximize the coverage and improve the quality of services provided to SAM cases at the community level.

Management of Severe Acute Malnutrition and Out Patient Therapeutic Program Training Material - Federal Ministry of Health and UNICEF, Ethiopia

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