A fresh round of survey to determine the nutritional status of children in Madhya Pradesh is likely to start from February.
The district level survey — the second of its kind — would be conducted by the Hyderabad-based National Institute of Nutrition, an Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) unit.
The state department of women and child development (DWCD) is commissioning the survey as a follow-up of a similar survey undertaken in 2010. The report had been released in August 2011. Principal secretary of DWCD JN Kansotiya said the survey was planned from the next month.
MP has high rates of malnutrition and the third National Family Health Survey (NFHS-3) conducted in 2005-6 (released in 2009) had shown 62.7% of rural children in MP (under the age of five years) to be underweight which is the highest in the country. NFHS-3 also showed 51.7% of children in the state to be stunted, indicating chronic malnutrition and 36.0% children to be wasted, indicating short-term acute malnutrition. Both these figures are also amongst the highest in the country.
This is the latest national level nutritional survey available as the fourth round of NFHS is still underway.
Stung by these high levels of malnutrition shown in NFHS-3, the state government commissioned NIN to undertake a district-level comprehensive survey in 2010 and the results showed considerable decline in under-nutrition status of children below the age of five.
NIN reported 51.9% children to be underweight, 48.9% children to be stunted and 25.8% children to be wasted.
The state government launched certain initiatives to contain malnutrition problems, including the launch of the Atal Child Health and Nutrition Mission.
The department is now seeking to check the latest trends in nutritional levels by conducting the second round of the survey. Principal secretary Kansotiya told HT that the possibility of generating specific nutritional data for Scheduled Tribe children through the survey would be discussed with NIN authorities.