19 August 2013

Indian Malnutrition--A Little Less Conversation a Little More Action

This is the week Elvis Presley passed away back in 1977. He famously sang "A little less conversation, a little more action".

These lyrics come to mind when trying to explain malnutrition in India. Everyone has their own ideas, and they tend to get called "enigmas".

In a short perspective paper prepared for the Indian Health Report (IHR), led by IDS partner the Public Health Foundation of India and out later this year, I review the different enigmas: is it the standards, women's status, agricultural disconnects, open defecation, weak health system etc.? 

The biennial IHR, aimed at a broad national and international policy and academic audience, will provide a periodic assessment of health in India, with each issue focusing on a specific area of health challenge. The inaugural issue on Nutrition will provide a rigorous analytical overview of the current trends, challenges, and puzzles related to maternal and child nutrition in India, and highlight the role of policy in improving a wide range of nutritional outcomes, especially at the state level.

As I said, in my contribution I run through the various enigmas. Some are more convincing than others in terms of the evidence, but the biggest enigma is why the Government of India is not more exercised about doing something about malnutrition.

As Elvis might say we're still waiting for Delhi to be All Shook Up about malnutrition in India.

1 comment:

  1. It's tragic to say the least. One can only hope with India's growing economy that we'll see the financial improvements creating new opportunities for all of India