Malnutrition on the rise in Jawzjan

SHEBERGHAN (SW) – Officials at the Afghan-Turk children’s hospital in Jawzjan say that the number of malnourished children in this province has increased by 20 percent this year.

They add that the most important cause of malnutrition is the poor economic status of families and unhealthy eating.

Fereydoun Morteza, deputy director of the Afghan-Turk hospital in Jawzjan, says: “In terms of referrals, this year the number of malnourished patients has increased by 20% compared to last year.” According to him, due to the well-equipped Afghan-Turk hospital, the residents of Sar-e-Pol, Faryab, Badghis and Balkh also bring their malnourished children to this hospital for treatment.

Meanwhile, a number of patients at the hospital in Jawzjan, whose children are malnourished, ask the government and aid agencies to help them to prevent their children from becoming malnourished and provide timely treatment.

Gol Dasta, a resident of Jawzjan, whose child was suffering from malnutrition and she brought him to the hospital in this province for treatment, says: “He has been vomiting and has diarrhea for three months. We could not treat it in time. He was at home for a month when we finally had to come to hospitalize him.”

Hekmatullah, a resident of Jawzjan, says that due to poverty, he could not adequately provide for his family’s needs and as a result, his children suffered from malnutrition. He says: “I have two children that I could not bring because of the lack of facilities and financial resources. They are malnourished.”

Officials say that they have recently provided about 193 boxes of nutritional supplements to malnourished children at the hospital.

Abdulwase Qayyumi, deputy director of public health of Jawzjan, says: “These nutritional materials were collected from the province level as a result of the inspection of the management team and some of our mobile teams that were active in Jawzjan. There are 193 cartons that we have officially submitted to the Afghan-Turk hospital.”

The lack of awareness of families and the spread of poverty in recent years has caused the number of children to suffer from malnutrition to increase and many of them face the risk of death across the country.