Undernutrition is the underlying cause of 3.5 million child deaths and 11% of the total global burden of disease. While the causes of this condition are mostly predictable and preventable, countries with a high burden of undernutrition often lack the knowledge, capacity and resources to prioritise and deliver effective nutrition interventions.
Following regional consultation, the AusAID Women and Children’s Health Hub, located at Menzies, is developing a Nutrition Critical Appraisal Tool. This is a practical guide to appraise new and existing nutrition activities including feasibility, proven effectiveness, cost-effectiveness, benefit to most vulnerable, capacity required, and government ownership and control. This tool will enable governments in resource poor settings to better evaluate the areas of nutritional need within their vulnerable populations and identify effective ways in which to meet those needs.
The problems of poverty, poor nutrition, and limited service delivery and capacity are shared by developing countries and many remote Indigenous communities in Australia particularly in the area of maternal and child nutrition.
Utilising the knowledge gained from working in both environments and the literature informing the development of the Nutrition Critical Appraisal Tool, Menzies’ researchers have created a short course entitled; Nutrition and Food Security; Approaches to improving the health of women and children to address the nutrition training needs of practitioners working in these areas.
Staff: Kim Mulholland, Heather Grieve, Kate Mellor, Anna Roesler, Aimon Riyana, Jodi Phillips
Collaborators: International Health Services, Albion Street Centre; Aboriginal Medical Services Alliance Northern Territory; Australian Volunteers International; Australian Youth Ambassadors for Development; Food and Agriculture Organisation regional office, Bangkok; The Fred Hollows Foundation; QLD Department of Health; Australian Red Cross; NT Department of Health and Families; Batchelor Institute of Indigenous Tertiary Education; Community and International Nutrition Division, Mahidol University, Thailand