Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Latest Posts

SL health authorities dispute lancet study on child malnutrition and underweight girls

March 12, Colombo (LNW): Sri Lanka’s health authorities have refuted recent findings published in The Lancet, a British medical journal, regarding child malnutrition and underweight girls, asserting that the portrayal of Sri Lanka in the study is inaccurate.

The study, published on February 29 and covering data from 1990 to 2022, asserts that approximately 410,000 girls in Sri Lanka are classified as underweight, constituting a prevalence of 16.4 per cent.

Despite ongoing efforts to enhance nutrition and healthcare accessibility, the report alleges no discernible improvement in this concerning statistic since 1990.

Furthermore, The Lancet ranks Sri Lanka second globally, after India, for the highest prevalence of severely underweight girls aged 5 to 19 years.

Conducted by the NCD Risk Factor Collaboration in collaboration with the World Health Organisation (WHO), the study underscores a stagnation in the situation over the past three decades, contrasting with a decrease in underweight individuals observed in India during the same period.

However, Sri Lankan health officials have strongly contested the study’s conclusions regarding the Sri Lankan context.

Dr. Palitha Mahipala, Secretary of the Ministry of Health, dismissed the findings, asserting that they do not align with the actual situation in Sri Lanka.

Similarly, Dr. Chithramalee De Silva, Director of the Family Health Bureau, expressed dissatisfaction with the data utilised by The Lancet.

According to the latest health ministry report, Sri Lanka recorded severe acute malnutrition (SAM) in 15,763 children (1.2 per cent) in 2023, compared to 18,420 children (1.4 per cent) in 2022.

This dispute follows the health ministry’s earlier rejection of a report by the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) on child malnutrition in Sri Lanka.

Latest Posts


Don't Miss

Stay in touch

To be updated with all the latest news, offers and special announcements.