US to support Ghana achieve nutrition, health objectives — Malave
The United States (US) is committed to supporting the government to achieve its nutrition and health objectives to build a more resilient, productive and inclusive society.
The Nutrition and Social Protection Team Lead, United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Maureen Malave, said the US was committed to the partnership to support nutrition activities in Ghana to improve the health of Ghanaians.
That, she said, would be continuously done through the Resilience in Northern Ghana (RIIG II) project by working with the Ministry of Local Government, Decentralisation and Rural Development (MLGDRD).
“As part of the project, 17 districts would implement activities in the areas of health, agriculture, water, sanitation and hygiene to help address all the root causes of malnutrition,” she added.
She was speaking at the regional close-out learning event of the Advancing Nutrition Ghana project in Bolgatanga last Wednesday.
It was on the theme: “Deepening the multi-sectoral nutrition agenda-The USAID advancing nutrition story”.
She indicated that USAID was actively working with the Ghana Health Service (GHS) to strengthen networks of practice across northern Ghana and ensure the integration of nutrition services at all levels of the healthcare system.
Support health workers
She said the organisation would continue to support health workers to improve service delivery and counselling related to infant and young child feeding, anaemia prevention and control, the management of severe malnutrition and community-based nutrition services.
She stressed that poor nutrition had many adverse consequences for child survival and long-term well-being, saying “It has far-reaching consequences for human capital, economic productivity and national development”.
“USAID will continue to work with GHS to advocate the inclusion of nutrition commodities in the essential medicines list so that commodities can be covered under the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS),” she said.
The Upper East Regional Minister, Stephen Yakubu, commended USAID for the interventions in the region and assured the organisation of continuous partnership to ensure that the lives of the people were enhanced.
“As we celebrate the successes of the project, let us be mindful of the challenges and work to sustain the gains made together with other USAID interventions in our respective areas of jurisdiction,” he said.
“I wish to assure you of the government’s commitment and that of the Municipal and District Assemblies (MDAs) towards improving the lives of the people through partnership and infrastructure provision, among others,” Mr Yakubu stated.
In a welcome address, the Deputy Director, Administration at the Regional Directorate of the GHS, Pascal Dongzuing, said the project had contributed significantly to addressing malnutrition in the region.
He noted that the region benefitted from the project in the areas of capacity building, community engagements, mobilisation, fuel support for outreaches, the supply of essential registers and service delivery tools, among others.
He mentioned that as part of the project, pregnant women in all four districts of operation, namely Garu, Tempane, Bawku West and Bawku Municipality, had been provided with the maternal and child health record books towards improving service delivery and documentation.
The Paramount Chief of the Bongo Traditional Area, Naba Baba Salifu Atamale Lemyaarum, who chaired the event, underscored the need for children to be provided with the needed nutritional foods right from infancy to enable them to grow healthy.